Ramadan fasting is a perfect time to do the annual detox on our body and our internal organs. Detoxification is the process of reducing intake of foods and eliminating toxins from our body. This allows the body to clear excess mucus and congestion which helps to revitalize the body’s natural functions and healing capacities.
Fasting improves the processes of elimination and increases the release of toxins from the colon, kidneys and bladder, lungs and respiratory tract, sinuses, and the skin. Without the continual intake of foods during the day, we allow the digestive system to rest.
Fasting is a natural immune booster, it enhances the ability of the lymphocytes to fight off bacterial attack. Fasting also purifies our blood, gives the chance for the gastrointestinal system to regenerate its lining, boosts the detoxifying powers of our liver, and cleanses our kidneys.
Toxins are all around us, such as synthetic chemicals which are added to our food, pesticides and herbicides sprayed on our crops, hormones and antibiotics which are fed to our live stocks, heavy metals in our water supply, fluoride and chlorine added to our tap water, mercury deposits in our seafood, lead inhaled from our car exhaust. These toxins stress our bodies and internal organs.
By minimizing the work load on the organs of digestion through fasting, our internal organs such as the intestines, stomach, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, and even the kidneys, get a chance to repair and restore themselves, clear existing toxins, and clean up the circulating blood and lymph.
Digestion, which is the breaking down of foods drains a whole lot of energy from the body but in Ramadan it gets a rest. The energy which is normally used on the process of digestion is now freed up and can be focused towards enhancing health and vitality and sharpening the functions of the mind.
That is why it is not surprising when people who fast report having higher energy levels, more mental clarity and concentration, and greater spiritual awareness and meditation during the days of Ramadan.
Fasting can be a remedy for a number of health problems. Indigestion, poor bowel function, and excess abdominal fat strain the muscles of the back, which may be responsible for many forms of back pain. This type of back pain can be alleviated by fasting and a lighter diet during the evenings. Allergies and sinuses congestion may be relieved because fasting helps rid the body of excess mucus discharge.
The Ramadan fast can be extremely effective at cleaning out our bodies and restoring vitality. To get the most of Ramadan for the body, try not to stuff yourself too much during time of Iftar. Eating smaller meals will encourage the body to make use of the incoming energy and adjust to this stress on its digestive organs gradually after such a long period without food.
Smaller portions will also allow us to benefit from the energy within the food and feel energetic, as opposed to the debilitating lethargy that comes from stuffing ourselves.
Another advice to encourage detoxification during the Ramadan fast is to focus on detoxifying foods. Most raw, unprocessed and whole food diets will work wonderfully, but to make the fast just that much more effective, concentrate specifically on green leafy vegetables, increasing water intake, and being very particular about one’s oil intake. Omega-3 oils, oils that are commonly lacking in our diets—found in fish and certain vegetable sources—are a good choice during any fast as the fat in our body burns away and is replaced by the healthier oil.
Foods to avoid would be anything with refined carbohydrates (soda, sweets, white bread, potatoes without the skin), which will only push the body into overload and storage of energy, along with poor quality oils (fried, hydrogenated and trans-fats), and foods devoid of nutrients—that’s most processed food in general.
Finally, a little bit of exercise after the break of the fast is highly recommended. Going for a light walk, doing some housework, or standing for the tarawih prayer will all provide your body with the flexing and stretching that it needs to run smoothly.