Preparing a Healthier Iftar

  • Written by Humairah Hameed
  • Dietitian/Nutritionist & MHPA member

Ramadan is an incredibly busy month and understandably so as we go about our usual activities in the day whilst trying to squeeze in more ibadah and prayer in between, especially at night. Though there are some who are lucky enough to get off work an hour earlier, the rest may have to beat the evening rush hour traffic in order to get home on time.

As we strive to better ourselves in all aspects of our life, let’s become more conscious of what we put in our mouths too, especially this Ramadan. Whether you are preparing food at home for your family or communal meals for iftar, I hope this guide below will help our community to eat better for a more fulfilling and satisfying Ramadan! 

Mosque committees may need to make prior arrangements with cooking staff, imam etc, to make this possible, in accordance with the sunnah. Try to adopt sunnah practices in the way we eat our food as well :

  • Eating with three fingers. [The sunnah is to eat with three fingers; eating with more than three fingers is a sign of greed and is bad manners, because there is no need for more than three in order to gather up a morsel. If it is necessary to use more than three, because the food is light and cannot be gathered in three fingers, then he may use the fourth or fifth. – see Fath al-Baari, 9/578]
  • Eating in moderation. [“A man does not fill any vessel worse than his stomach. It is sufficient for the son of Adam to eat enough to keep him alive. But if he must do that, then one-third for his food, one-third for his drink and one-third for his air. –Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 2380; Ibn Maajah, 3349; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi, 1939]
  • Eating slowly is recommended for health. Slow eating reduces the consumption of food, as it postpones much of the meal to a time when the absorption of nutrients begin to produce physiological signals of satiety.

Slow eating helps in chewing the food well. This results in the exercise of the jaws and mixing of the saliva with food. Hence, efficient digestion takes place because the food particles are cut into smaller pieces, not requiring as much churning in the stomach or intestine (less heartburn).

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May Allah make it easy for us to change our habits and lifestyles for the better and may you receive all the blessing of the last weeks of Ramadan, ameen!