Self-care during Ramadan gives me the necessary strength and motivation to observe Ramadan.
As a Muslim, to me, Ramadan is perhaps one of the humblest months I spent observing not just the rituals but also ensuring impartial self-care. To me, this month is as much about reflecting and practicing self-discipline as much as it is about prayers and uniting with God.
Ramadan is much more than fasting.
Yes, fasting is a pivotal part of Ramadan, and from sunrise to sunset, we must abstain from eating and drinking. But Ramadan is not limited to just fasting. There is a conscious attempt to practice self-discipline and restraint as one must go without food and water, but the greater intention is to be grateful for all the necessities we are blessed with.
It is a time to count one’s blessings and help another who might not be as privileged as us. It is a time to practice giving back to the community whichever way we can. When one reflects on the blessings in life, a sense of humbling is bound to come. Amidst all this, it is essential to prioritize self-care during Ramadan. When one wishes to connect with the Higher Being and be a better human, having a healthy mind and body is necessary.
Let’s be grateful for the gift of Ramadan, where we can practice numerous virtues. Let’s never take anything for granted.
Why self-care during Ramadan is important?
As Ramadan starts, there are numerous changes that our bodies and mind go through. All practicing Muslims observing Ramadan, enter a phase of spiritual well-being, which makes a great positive impact on mental health. However, it is also vital to consider physical health as well.
Fasting can have severe impacts on the body. Especially during harsh summers, there is a possibility of dehydration, low blood sugar, fatigue, and even loss of concentration. Of course, if one is unwell, they are not encouraged to fast, but otherwise, any healthy adult who has made an intention observes fasting during the month-long period.
Research shows that fasting during Ramadan brings about biochemical, metabolic, and physiological changes in the body. Studies conducted by Sultan Ayoub Meo and Asim Hassan have found that fasting increases the RBC, WBC, and platelets and decreases blood cholesterol and inflammation. These are some of the positive changes that fasting brings in.
However, we must also provide our minds and body with the right nutrients at the proper time. Eating a balanced diet, including fruits and vegetables, in addition to ensuring the intake of protein, minerals, and vitamins in adequate amounts, benefits self-care during Ramadan.
There are no adverse effects on organs when fasting, but it is important to note that there must be a routine. Properly breaking the fast is as vital as keeping it. Therefore, timely eating and having the right food items are necessary to maintain proper glucose and blood pressure levels. One must take suitable measures to remain healthy.
Self-care prioritizes your well-being and helps you remain in proper shape. There are numerous ways to ensure good self-care, but remember to maintain a healthy balance between the mind and the body.
So, self-care during Ramadan is necessary so that one can observe Ramadan without any difficulty.
Here are six tips that you can follow:
Do not skip Suhoor (Sehri)
Just as they say, skipping breakfast isn’t a good idea as it is an essential meal during the day, and so is missing Suhoor. What you eat before sunrise, as Suhoor, will fuel you for the day. Neglecting it can result in weakness and inability to function correctly throughout the day. Also, ensure your consumption is healthy and nutritious, which will help you carry on.
Conscious fluid intake
Once you break your fast, during Iftaar, ensure you drink lots of water and avoid too many sugary drinks. Yes, there is a temptation to gulp down cool sugary drinks but try replacing them with fresh fruit juices. Also, until again it’s time for Suhoor, keep intaking water frequently.
Proper sleep and rest
Proper rest and sleep ensure effective self-care during Ramadan. Not only will it ensure that you do not feel overworked or fatigued throughout, but it will also help you remain productive throughout the day. As your body and mind are undergoing changes, you must give them the rest they deserve.
Do not oversleep.
Make adjustments at your job
As a working professional, you must note that time is essential. So, do not compromise on Iftaar timings when in office. Please communicate with your team members and make them understand the importance of Ramadan. With a supportive team, your entire Ramadan can be as comfortable as spiritual.
Also, remember that they might not know anything about Ramadan, so keep your patience.
I have an excellent supportive organization and team members, and it has been going great with them for the last seven years. We have our Ramadan rituals too.
Give attention to mental health
During Ramadan, your habits change, and there is an inevitable change in lifestyle. This can lead to stress as balancing your daily chores and making time for building spiritual connections and praying can get complicated. Make sure that you devote time for self-care during Ramadan, as it works directly towards boosting your mental health.
Practicing self-discipline, reflecting, and immersing yourself in spirituality brings mental peace. But often, it can get disturbed because of commitments in your daily routine. Keep patience. Don’t let it affect you.
Being calm and relaxed is also a part of Ramadan. There can be numerous instances when you might feel like losing control. But when you prioritize mental health, you gain greater control over your mind. This works wonderfully when you consciously choose peace over chaos.
Remember to feel good
Thanks to social media, there is a lot of competition regarding Ramadan. For some, it is about having a grand feast during Iftaar; for some, it could be celebrating with many people. Do not feel sad if it is not the same for you.
Remember that Ramadan is a very personal time to connect with the Higher Being, and how you observe it is also personal. There is no competition. Everyone has a different lifestyle.
So, whatever you are doing in your little way is excellent. Your spiritual journey matters more than the number of likes on special media.
When you focus on self-care during Ramadan, everything turns positive, and your journey is filled with gratitude and compassion.
May your Ramadan be filled with all things good!
Click here to read about how to detox yourself post-festivities.