Whilst Ramadhan is all about abstaining from food, it’s still important to manage your meals and ensure that your body is being fed the right foods. After all, you will be fasting all day and this change requires a fresh approach to your diet.
For many of us, it can be easy to load up when we break our fast, but this can leave you feeling lethargic and uneasy. The idea is to eat those foods that are well-balanced, whilst ensuring that your diet consists of a variety of items that benefits your body.
So, what exactly should you be eating and drinking for Iftar and Suhoor?
What Are The Best Foods To Have For Iftar?
The default advice will always be to drink plenty of fluids when breaking the fast. However, beyond this, it’s also important to ensure that you’re consuming fluid-rich foods and foods with natural sugars such as plenty of water, fruit juices, smoothies, dates and fruits. You could also have soup as it is light on the body and also keeps you hydrated at the same time. If you do have soup, be sure to add some protein and starchy foods such as lentils and pasta. These will provide you with the energy you need after abstaining from food all day.
As a guide, you should be aiming to go for a balance of starchy foods, fruits, vegetables, protein-rich foods and foods with natural sugars.
Ghazala Yousuf, a lead dietician provides beneficial advice on how one should break his/her fast. “Keep slow so you’re not eating a large meal very quickly, as you can get a shift in your electrolytes after not eating all day.”
She also adds, “Start slowly perhaps with some fruit or some dates, then go onto maybe your starter and then your main meal so you’re breaking it down.”
What Are The Best Foods To Have For Suhoor?
Just like with Iftar, it is also essential to drink plenty of fluids at the time of Suhoor. Staying hydrated in Ramadhan is key, as water is what the body requires the most. Beyond this, the foods that one should eat can vary.
One of the best foods to consume is oats. As oats are wholegrain, they will help in keeping you feeling fuller and will also avoid any feeling of constipation. Add some milk, yoghurt, fruits, nuts or seeds for a complete and nourishing meal. You could also opt for wholegrain bread or chapatis which you can eat with peanut butter, a lentil curry or a banana. Whatever the case, be sure to drink plenty of fluids as bread can be pretty dry.
“Keep your morning meal light and have nothing fried or nothing fatty as you may get reflux throughout the day trying to digest a heavy meal,” Yousuf warned.
She also adds, “Cut out the caffeine if you can, because it can be dehydrating, especially things like coffee or too strong cups of tea. Tea would be fine but try to avoid too much caffeine.”