Being back in Kenya and having friends fasting for Ramadhan motivated me to write about how to keep the scale from tipping during the holy month.
Ramadhan would actually be the perfect time to shed some weight and keep it off if managed correctly given that there is a fasting window and feasting period similar to Intermittent fasting programs.
The fasting periods during Ramadhan are from sunrise 5am to sunset at 6.45pm. This provides a 14 hour fasting window and a 10 hour feasting window that’s greatly reduced once sleep time is factored in.
Here is a sample eating plan that can be followed:
6.45pm – break the fast by drinking (500ml or more) water 30 minutes prior to meal
7.15pm – Meal 1 – protein, starch, vegetables
10.00pm – Meal 2 – protein and vegetables only
4.45am – Meal 3 – Protein, starch, vegetables
To capitalize on the fast it’s important to pay attention to portions, quality of nutrients and methods used to prepare the foods. Adhering to the tips below can help in making the most of Ramadhan:
1. Break the fast by drinking water, at least 500ml prior to eating
2. Start by eating some vegetables
3. Avoid cooking with ghee and butter and use healthier cooking oils such as coconut oil or other vegetable oils
4. Avoid cooking methods that involve deep frying
5. Eat high quality nutrients such as potatoes, rice, and avoid low quality nutrients such as items made from wheat
6. Portion control is key – Instead of having 1 or 2 very large meals in the evening, have 2 small meals. ½ of your plate should be filled with nutritious vegetables, then ¼ protein/meat and the other ¼ starch
7. Avoid overeating by eating until you’re almost full. A good indicator of overeating is when you don’t feel hungry after 3 hours.
8. Starches are to be avoided right before bed time
I hope this outline proves helpful as you go through Ramdhan.