When you’ve been fasting for 14 hours then it can be easy to reach out and grab the first sweet or salty snack you can get your hands on. But our bodies are complex machines and any sudden influxes of high fat, high salt or high sugar foods can cause bloating, stomach cramps and a crash in energy.
Which is why it’s important to respect your body and break your fast with dates.
Breaking a fast with dates is deep rooted in tradition since Prophet Muhammad is known to have broken his fast with three dates and water.
So what makes dates healthy?
Dates are the perfect choice for fuelling an empty stomach. They are high in (natural) sugar, fibre, minerals, vitamins, phytonutrients and vitamin C. They also have plenty of potassium, magnesium, iron, protein and fat.
The other benefit is that dates are highly digestable, this makes them the ideal way to break your fast because you get a quick boost of all the good nutrients and energy boosting properties.
They help to control over eating
Over eating after a period of fasting is common because the body has a natural instinct to store food. However, this can cause problems. Eating dates after fasting can also help to bring your bodies blood glucose levels back to normal and will also satisfy the sensation of hunger, helping to curb over eating.
It’s not just indulging in food that ca cause heart burn and indigestion - fasting can also lead to an increase in acidity within the body. Dates can help the body to decrease the production of acid and will help to soothe your stomach.
Good for the digestive system
Long periods of fasting can cause disruption with your digestive processes. However, dates can help get your digestive tract back on an even keel as they stimulate the secretion of digestive enzymes therefore easing the stomach and promoting regular bowel movements.
Whilst dates are an amazing food not only to break your fast with but also to eat throughout the period of Ramadan, just like any other food source, they should be consumed in moderation.