As the devotees remain on fasting during the month of Ramzaan, it becomes vital to eat right as you break the fast by day end especially during the Covid-19 pandemic when immunity needs to be stronger.
The fasting, however comes with tangible health benefits, but with a combination of healthy food choices and sleep-wake cycle, the body resets your metabolism as well as biological clock and can not only help you shed some weight but even lower cholesterol levels in the body.
Dr (Prof.) Sundeep Mishra, Department of Cardiology, AIIMS, New Delhi reveals a healthy diet plan which one could easily follow during fasting especially in Covid-19 pandemic that could keep one healthy.
Here is a list of what to eat after fasting in the evening while breaking the day long fast.
What to eat during Sehri:-
- Protein-rich food: Eggs have simple easily digestible proteins and other nutrients. Lentils and pulses are equally useful.
- Fibre-rich carbohydrates: Oats, buckwheat, bread, millet, ragi, lentils, fiber rich rice.
- Calcium and vitamin-rich food: Milk products (kheer, daliya, milk / milk shakes)
- Fiber containing fruits: Figs, pears, raspberry, guava, melon, banana, pomegranate etc and vegetables like tomato, cucumber, lettuce also help maintain hydration and at the same time keep you cool and prevent constipation.
- Dry fruits: Dates, almond, walnut contain good fat with slower digestion and therefore sustained release of energy and at the same time keep you feeling full.
What to eat during Iftar:-
- Potassium-rich fruits: Dates, beans, dark leafy greens, potatoes, squash, yogurt, avocados, mushrooms, bananas.
- Sufficient fluids but stagger your hydration: Slowly drink as much water, coconut water or fruit juices (sip by sip) as possible between iftar and bedtime to avoid dehydration.
- Raw nuts: Almonds & walnuts.
- Hydrating vegetables: Cucumbers, lettuce, tomato, squash (kaddu / lauki), aubergine (baigan) and other vegetables
- High protein foods: Grilled, boiled or steamed meat, chicken, fish / sea-food or vegetable dishes rich in protein like beans, chick pea or lentils.
What not to eat during Sehri:-
- Simple/ refined sugars: Sugar, white flour, pastries, mithai provide satisfaction for only 3-4 hours and following it rebound craving. Switch to fruits instead.
- Salty food: Salted nuts, pickles, chips and food that contain soya sauce makes you very thirsty while fasting.
- Caffeinated drinks: Tea, Coffee (Caffeine) leads to insomnia and restlessness but doesn’t hydrate, rather keeps you thirsty for the whole day.
- Carbonated beverages: They are usually high in sugar, increasing your risk of not only weight gain but also cause bloating and gas.
What not to eat during Iftar:-
- Carbonated drinks
- High-sugar foods: Sweets and chocolates are high on calories and low nutritional value, are best avoided.
- Fried-foods: Fried dumplings, samosas, pastries and oily curries, should be avoided as they not only cause weight gain but also leads to acidity and indigestion.
- Loading up on water: It is far smarter to stagger your hydration through the night. Start with 2 glasses of water; follow with a glass of water till bedtime. The aim should be to consume six glasses of water till bedtime.
Do not mix fruits with main meals. Avoid combining citrus foods with milk-based foods. These combinations can cause indigestion too.