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April 19, 2021 5 min read

The month of Ramadan is the period when the body's working system changes in many aspects and the body's metabolism changes depending on the different diet. Therefore, during this period, the diet and the quality of the foods consumed require more care than ever before. Eating should be balanced, adequate and healthy during the period from Iftar to Suhoor in the month of Ramadan, when hunger reaches 15-16 hours due to fasting. Weight gain is one of the most common problems during Ramadan. Although they eat a lot of food at a regular time and their food consumption is very limited during Ramadan, it has been observed that many individuals gain weight involuntarily. Whereas, the "Moda Style's website" offers you two different ways to prevent this situation caused by changes in the metabolic rate. One is to exercise regularly in the month of Ramadan, as it should be in every period of life, and the other is the careful selection of the foods that are eaten during the fasting period.

Ways to prevent weight gain in Ramadan
After a hunger lasting 15 to 16 hours, the content of each meal eaten at breakfast time is of great importance for weight control and stomach health. One of the biggest mistakes you make at breakfast is eating too much at one time. With the effect of hunger, eating a large amount of food at breakfast quickly causes the stomach, which has been empty for long hours, to enter into sudden contractions. This situation negatively affects the health of the stomach and causes cramps and indigestion problems. To prevent this from happening, the soup should be consumed first at breakfast. This soup should be light, with a low fat, low in salt, and vegetarian content with a little spice. In addition, the food eaten for breakfast should not be too hot or too cold. After a bowl of warm soup drunk, take a break of 20-30 minutes and prepare a main meal consisting of healthy meals with a balanced content at the end of the break. The meal should include low-fat and light foods that contain adequate protein sources to meet your daily protein requirement. The carbohydrate sources consumed should consist of whole grains. After the main meal, with a few snacks with an interval of 2.5 hours, you should eat milk and dairy products that help meet the need for calcium and fresh fruits. A diet plan arranged in this way, when supported with exercise, will help you protect your health and fitness while fasting during Ramadan.

The effect of fasting on metabolism
In cases of long-term fasting such as Ramadan fasting, the body protects its energy stores and limits energy expenditure. For this reason, there is a decrease in the metabolic rate. When the body overloads nutrients after long-term hunger, the excess energy is sent to the fat stores, weight gain occurs, and cardiovascular disease is particularly called upon. Therefore, it is important during Ramadan not to eat hard-to-digest foods that are high in fat, salt, spices and animal protein, and to consume plenty of fluids and speed up the metabolism through appropriate exercises. Regular exercise to do during Ramadan helps prevent muscle loss that occurs as a result of the breakdown of body proteins due to hunger. In addition, it contributes to an increase in the metabolism rate that decreases due to hunger and prevents weight gain. One of the biggest mistakes that people make is to sleep after eating at night, and not wake up for the pre-dawn meal. Although this prolongs the hunger period, it slows down the metabolism rate, and it also causes problems such as weight gain and poor stomach health due to lying down immediately after eating. That is why the suhoor should be regular in the month of Ramadan, and not sleep immediately after the suhoor, and the feeling of fullness in the stomach decreases.

What should be the pattern of exercise in Ramadan?
During Ramadan, exercise beginners and those suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol and heart disease are advised three times a week with low-intensity and intense aerobic exercises such as walking at a low pace, swimming, Pilates and yoga for 30-45 minutes that do not increase their heart rate and do not sweat. Those who continue a regular exercise program should shorten the intensity and duration of the exercise program, increase rest periods, and reduce the amount of weight and number of sets in resistance exercises. You can also do low-intensity cardio in the morning.

Divide breakfast into several parts, first soup, then rest, then eat light foods, both of which prevent the negative effects that may occur due to exercise after breakfast, and stimulate the metabolism and digestive system. Another important point in the exercises that must be done during Ramadan is when to do the exercise. If exercise is to be exercised before breakfast, then it should be done 1-2 hours before the meal, and if to be exercised after breakfast, then it should be started 1-2 hours after the meal. Because the main meal that must be prepared at breakfast, especially after long-term hunger, pushes the body into an intense digestion process. Exercising during this period carries risks to heart health. For this reason, it is best to wait one to two hours after breakfast and to reduce the feeling of fullness in the abdomen to exercise. You can eat soft foods again after a workout. These foods could be milk and dairy products, which are sources of protein that help support muscle protection, or fresh fruits that help meet your vitamin and mineral needs.

How to compensate for lost fluids in fasting and exercise?
One of the biggest problems in Ramadan is fluid loss. Severe loss of fluid in the body occurs due to fasting throughout the day, and lost fluids must be replaced in order to maintain health. People who engage in healthy and moderate physical activity need up to 2 liters of water a day. This liquid that is not consumed during the day because of fasting must be replaced in the period between Iftar and Sahur. Since fluid loss will occur during the exercises to be performed, the minimum amount of fluid to be consumed is 2 liters, and this amount should be higher for people who exercise more intensely. Consuming lots of water after exercise is very effective in preventing fluid loss and speeding up the metabolism. Drinks such as tea, coffee, and green tea increase the amount of fluid the body needs due to the diuretic effect they have on the body and create a feeling of thirst. For this reason, it can cause difficulty fasting and health problems due to dehydration (fluid loss). For this reason, these drinks should not be consumed as much as possible and should not be included in your daily fluid intake when consumed.

Having a healthy Ramadan depends on planning your diet well and meeting all of your body's needs. Preventing weight gain during this period is important for maintaining general health and maintaining a balance of values ​​such as cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood. Therefore, in light of the information provided above, one must choose the appropriate foods in the period from Iftar to Suhoor; You must ensure that you fully meet your needs for protein, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and fluids. Likewise, care must be taken to exercise regularly during the month of Ramadan in order to prevent weight gain and prevent an excessive slowdown of the metabolism rate. The exercises that you will do in this process will also help you prevent muscle loss. If you suffer from a chronic disease or a specific health problem, you should consult a health institution for information on whether you can fast or what to watch out for while fasting. After the checks and tests, you can find out what you need to do to have a healthy Ramadan in line with the information you will get from your doctor and dietitian, and learn how to complete this process without sacrificing your health.

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