As the month of Ramadan approaches, a lot of people fear the idea of abstaining from food and water for 16 hours straight and what it would do to their bodies. However, contrary to popular belief, fasting has several benefits to the health and body.
This shouldn’t come as that big a surprise since fasting something God requested us to do, and God would never ask us to do anything harmful to ourselves and our bodies. This is what scientists have proven again and again by the experiments they’ve conducted which revealed the countless health benefits of fasting. And today, we’ll let you in on some of them:
1. Helps You Lose Weight
Fasting can be a fairly safe way to lose weight as fasting stimulates the body to burn through its fat cells more efficiently than most regular diets. So if you want to lose some weight, Ramadan is your chance, just do your best to resist the fatty delicious foods on the Iftar table.
2. Improves Insulin Sensitivity
Fasting has been proven to have the ability to increase insulin sensitivity which does wonders for diabetes patients. When you fast, your body uses up the glucose in your blood and liver since there are no other sources of energy, hence lower blood sugar levels.
When you break your fast, insulin becomes more effective at triggers the absorption of glucose by the fat and muscle cells since all the glucose stored in your body has already been used up.
This lowers the risk of developing diabetes, fat accumulation, and obesity. In addition to improving your overall health.
3. Speeds Up Metabolism
Fasting boosts metabolism. If you have a weak or troubled digestive system, then odds are your ability to metabolize food and burn fats is compromised.
However, fasting helps bt providing time for the digestive system to get some rest. So, when you break your fast with a rested digestive system, your metabolism receives a boost triggering your body to burn more calories and obtain more energy from the food.
4. Improves Immune System
Fasting gives our internal systems a chance to focus their energy on fixing what’s wrong and rebuilding what’s damages. Scientifically speaking, fasting triggers the regeneration of old cells which leads to an improved immune function.
According to a study, fasting for three days can actually lead to complete regeneration of the entire immune system and the production of a new and improved set of white blood cells. This, of course, gives the body a much stronger fighting chance against all types of diseases.
So next time you start to get sick, instead of going straight for food, consider fasting instead.
5. Improves Eating Patterns
Fasting can be the perfect therapeutic practice for those who have eating disorders, such as bulimia, or those who struggle to come up with a healthy eating system. Fasting forces you to organize your meals and prevents you from overeating because it forces you to abstain from food from dawn until sunset giving you a limited window for eating. Having to repeat that system for 30 days straight automatically sets your body clock and get you and your body accustomed to a certain eating pattern and an organized system.
6. Promotes Detoxification
Fasting also helps your body get rid of the accumulated toxins stored in it. During fasting, the brain considers the nutritional deprivation as a threat and starts to figure out ways to face said threat and provide the body with the energy it needs in the absence of food. Therefore, the brain is triggered to convert the glycogen stored in the liver into energy. However, since glycogen is not an adequate source of energy, the body turns to the fat stored in different parts of the body and burns them to provide it with energy. Therefore, the accumulated toxins that are stored in these fats get released and later on, removed from the body through the liver, kidneys and other organs leaving the body toxins-free.
7. Rejuvenates Skin and Prevents Acne
As a natural result to the previous roles fasting plays such as improving the immune system, rejuvenating new cells, and detoxifying the body, it enhances the health of your skin and gives it a better fighting chance against different skin abnormalities and diseases such as acne leaving your skin looking softer, smoother, and more importantly, healthier.
8. It is good for the heart
Fasting reduces the risk of developing heart diseases because as we pointed fasting triggers the body to burn cholesterol and accumulated fats to provide energy fuel. This helps increase blood pressure levels and decrease insulin sensitivity, two things that are considered to be the biggest risk factors for developing heart diseases.
9. It is good for blood pressure
As we previously mentioned, fasting promotes metabolism and fat burning, in addition to triggering glucose absorption. This, in turn, reduces the risk of clots, arteriosclerosis, and high blood pressure. Fasting also reduces hormone levels, such as adrenaline, which also helps reduces blood pressure levels.
Having mentioned all these health benefits fasting has, we can’t forget about the social and spiritual bonds Ramadan helps promote among the Muslim community as it brings families together and triggers sympathy and kindness between mankind. We can’t also ignore the huge role it plays in improving self-restriction, patience, and commitment. Because fasting Ramadan is not just about abstaining from food and water, it is about making humans pursue the absolute best version of themselves, on their own, or within their communities, resulting in a better life, better society, and a better world.