‘The most important mistake made while fasting is not getting up for sahur’

This year, spending the month of Ramadan in good health is more important than ever due to the coronavirus epidemic. Güven Çayyolu Surgical Medical Center Nutrition and Diet Specialist Melis Bengisu Demirci answered frequently asked questions about nutrition in the month of Ramadan. Demirci said about the measures to be taken to keep the immune system strong during Ramadan, “In order to maintain adequate and balanced nutrition and to keep the immunity strong, it is necessary to consume at least 2 meals in the non-fasting part of the day and not to skip the sahur meal. Care should also be taken to consume 5 portions of vegetables and fruits per day. In addition, food groups of all kinds and colors should be included in a 1-day meal plate and attention should be paid to water consumption.


Stating that one of the golden rules in Ramadan nutrition is to do sahur, Demirci said, “Not doing suhoor increases the duration of fasting up to 20 hours. This causes the fasting blood sugar to drop earlier in the hours. “It increases the risk of gaining weight because it slows down. For this reason, you can have a light breakfast consisting of foods such as milk, yoghurt, cheese, eggs, whole grain breads, or choose a light meal consisting of soup, olive oil dishes, yoghurt and salad.”


Demirci also gave information about the foods that are frequently consumed in Ramadan and said:

“Ramadan Pita: While fasting, it is necessary to take the basic nutrients that the body needs after a long hunger, consisting of carbohydrate, fat and protein. Ramadan pita can be preferred as a source of carbohydrate, provided that the portion is paid attention to. 1 slice of bread. Pita can be consumed as much as the palm.

Date: It is one of the healthy sources to be used in balancing blood sugar. To consume 2 dates with herbal tea every day during Ramadan; It will help reduce the consumption and desire of sweets.

Olives: Although it is a healthy oil source, olives with high salt amount should not be preferred after long-term hunger. Salt-reduced or unsalted olives can support breakfast preference in sahur.

Egg: It is the healthiest protein source after breast milk. If there is no disease or allergy, consuming 1 egg per sahur helps prolong satiety and consumption of quality protein.

Compote: Long-term hunger also affects intestinal motility. Drinks prepared with dried fruit and little sugar, such as compote; It supports both bowel health and daily fluid consumption. The point to note here is that the compote is prepared with little sugar or the fruit’s own sugar.

Tea: It should not be forgotten that caffeine-containing liquids such as tea and coffee have a diuretic effect. The sources of vital water consumption in case of hunger up to 16/18 hours should be selected correctly. When calculating the daily fluid intake, care should be taken to drink approximately two water of caffeine-containing beverages such as tea and coffee. “


Demirci also listed other issues that should be considered in nutrition in order to spend the month of Ramadan healthy as follows:

“After about 16 hours of hunger, consuming heavy meals at iftar is very tiring for the stomach. After iftar meals and soup, you should take a 20-30 minute break before starting the main meal. The diet after iftar should not be different from our normal diet. It should include complex carbohydrates such as cereals and whole grain bread, lean meats, legumes, fruits and vegetables Excessive food consumption should be avoided after a long hunger Excessive amount of food causes an increase in energy intake and body weight. Foods can cause nausea and deterioration throughout the day. Foods with high salt / sodium content should be avoided. Such foods increase thirst during fasting. Milk desserts or rosacea should be preferred instead of sherbet desserts during Ramadan.

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