It’s the end of Ramadan today, Eid al-Fitr.
I have this article about Ramadan fasting written almost four years ago. I’m (re)posting it for posterity’s sake.
- Most Muslims do not fast because of medical benefits but because it has been ordained to them in the Quran.
- Fasting in general has been used in medicine for medical reasons including weight management, for rest of the digestive tract and for lowering lipids.
- There are many adverse effects of total fasting as well as so-called crash diets. Islamic fasting is different from such diet plans because in Ramadan fasting, there is no malnutrition or inadequate calorie intake. The caloric intake of Muslims during Ramadan is at or slightly below the national requirement guidelines. In addition, the fasting in Ramadan is voluntarily taken and is not a prescribed imposition from the physician.
- The physiological effect of fasting includes lower of blood sugar, lowering of cholesterol and lowering of the systolic blood pressure.
- Ideal recommendation for treatment of mild to moderate, stable, non-insulin diabetes, obesity and essential hypertension.
- Patients who are suffering from severe diseases, whether diabetes or coronary artery disease, kidney stones, etc., are exempt from fasting and should not try to fast.
- There are psychological effects of fasting as well. There is a peace and tranquility for those who fast during the month of Ramadan. Personal hostility is at a minimum, and the crime rate decreases. …
- This psychological improvement could be related to better stabilization of blood glucose during fasting as hypoglycemia after eating, aggravates behavior changes. …
- Similarly, recitation of the Quran not only produces a tranquillity of heart and mind, but improves the memory.