Benefits of Fasting in Ramadan

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan is the ninth and the holiest month in the Islamic calendar. Muslims fast, abstain from pleasures, and pray during Ramadan to draw closer to God. It’s also a time for families to get together and enjoy the blessings of Allah. 

Muslims start fasting from the following day after the crescent moon appears in the sky, signaling the beginning of a new month. As a result, Ramadan does not begin in many countries until religious leaders declare that they have personally seen the crescent moon. The prolonged fasting ends with the worldwide celebration of Eid ul Fitr.

Allah has emphasized on the importance of fasting in Ramadan in these verses in Surah Al-Baqarah (Quran 2:183-185):

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ ٱلصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ ١٨٣

أَيَّامًۭا مَّعْدُودَٰتٍۢ ۚ فَمَن كَانَ مِنكُم مَّرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍۢ فَعِدَّةٌۭ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ ۚ وَعَلَى ٱلَّذِينَ يُطِيقُونَهُۥ فِدْيَةٌۭ طَعَامُ مِسْكِينٍۢ ۖ فَمَن تَطَوَّعَ خَيْرًۭا فَهُوَ خَيْرٌۭ لَّهُۥ ۚ وَأَن تَصُومُوا۟ خَيْرٌۭ لَّكُمْ ۖ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ ١٨٤

O believers! Fasting is prescribed for you—as it was for those before you — so perhaps you will become mindful ˹of Allah˺. 

˹Fast a˺ prescribed number of days. But whoever of you is ill or on a journey, then ˹let them fast˺ an equal number of days ˹after Ramaḍân˺. For those who can only fast with extreme difficulty, compensation can be made by feeding a needy person ˹for every day not fasted˺. But whoever volunteers to give more, it is better for them. And to fast is better for you, if only you knew. 

شَهْرُ رَمَضَانَ ٱلَّذِىٓ أُنزِلَ فِيهِ ٱلْقُرْءَانُ هُدًۭى لِّلنَّاسِ وَبَيِّنَـٰتٍۢ مِّنَ ٱلْهُدَىٰ وَٱلْفُرْقَانِ ۚ فَمَن شَهِدَ مِنكُمُ ٱلشَّهْرَ فَلْيَصُمْهُ ۖ وَمَن كَانَ مَرِيضًا أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍۢ فَعِدَّةٌۭ مِّنْ أَيَّامٍ أُخَرَ ۗ يُرِيدُ ٱللَّهُ بِكُمُ ٱلْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ ٱلْعُسْرَ وَلِتُكْمِلُوا۟ ٱلْعِدَّةَ وَلِتُكَبِّرُوا۟ ٱللَّهَ عَلَىٰ مَا هَدَىٰكُمْ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ ١٨٥

Ramaḍân is the month in which the Quran was revealed as a guide for humanity with clear proofs of guidance and the standard ˹to distinguish between right and wrong˺. So whoever is present this month, let them fast. But whoever is ill or on a journey, then ˹let them fast˺ an equal number of days ˹after Ramaḍân˺. Allah intends ease for you, not hardship, so that you may complete the prescribed period and proclaim the greatness of Allah for guiding you, and perhaps you will be grateful. 

Spiritual Benefits of Ramadan Fasting

1. Increases Taqwa

Taqwa is an Islamic phrase that refers to being aware of Allah and the truth and “piety and dread of God”. The term frequently appears in the holy book of the Quran. It bears the deep sense of being cautious over one’s own life and actions, as the angels are constantly on the watch. Additionally, fasting enhances the ability to be mindful of Allah and avoid unintentional offenses against the ways shown by Him. As a result, people lead on the path away from sins and wrong deeds.

2. Fetches greater rewards

All able Muslims are required to fast during Ramadan. It is said that Allah repays the fasting Muslims with great rewards and blessings. Each hour of fasting brings people closer to meeting Allah in the next life. But one should not fast for the gifts; instead, one should focus on its significance and value.

3. Leads to paradise and prevents Hellfire

Only those who fast during Ramadan will be allowed to enter paradise through the Ar-Rayyan gate on the Day of Resurrection. The virtue motivates people to increase their voluntary fasts while preparing for Ramadan. According to Muslim scholars, even a single day of fasting takes an individual away from Hellfire towards Jannah.

Health Benefits of Ramadan Fasting

1. Protection from obesity and chronic diseases

Fasting throughout Ramadan may assist in preventing obesity and other chronic diseases such as diabetes. Ramadan fasting requires abstaining from the consumption of food and water between dawn and sunset. Hence, it enhances the levels of proteins providing insulin resistance. It also offers protection against the hazards of a fat and sugar-rich diet.

2. Lowering cholesterol & improving blood sugar level

As Ramadan Fasting stimulates the lipid profile, it lowers blood cholesterol. Consequently, it prevents heart attacks, strokes, and other disorders. Also, if one maintains a healthy diet after Ramadan, individuals will retain the newly reduced cholesterol level.

3. Improved digestive system

Observing Ramadan and fasting positively impacts one’s lifestyle and digestive system. A human body naturally detoxifies after a month of flushing out of the toxins in the body. Further, it balances the heat generation and acidity levels in the human stomach.

Psychological Benefits of Ramadan Fasting

1. Enhances willpower

Fasting during Ramadan requires mental fortitude and the willingness to forego immediate enjoyment for accomplishing long-term goals. Fasting for a whole month induces a sense of happiness, focus, and self-control. These attributes can be utilized in various sects of life.

2. Increases alertness

Individuals who fast appear to have higher levels of vigilance and attention. Food is converted into glucose by the human body, and too much of it causes sluggishness and tiredness. Fasting helps the body regulate glucose levels, reducing sluggishness and increasing alertness.

3. Uplifts the mood

Muslims experience an enhanced sense of achievement, reward, pride, and control after hours of fasting. Fasting can boost self-esteem and a sense of accomplishment. At the same time, fasting and the pleasure felt after completing a challenging activity serve as a powerful feel-good stimulant on the brain.

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Fasting Tips for Ramadan

  • One should try to eat right before the crack of dawn when starting the fast for the next day
  • When breaking the fast in Ramadan, one should first consume a small quantity of food and avoid sweet or fatty items
  • To minimize dehydration at the end of the fast, people should drink plenty of sugar-free and decaffeinated water
  • Breaking your fast with dates and water gives your body an instant energy and hydration boost ahead of your main meal
  • Take it easy with the amount of heavy, creamy and fried foods, as well as salty and sugary dishes.
  • Fasting and dehydration can naturally cause you to feel lethargic and make your Ramadan days sedentary. However, with proper fluid intake during Suhoor and Iftar, you should also try to exercise in moderate amounts.


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