A recent study by the National Center for Diabetes found that about 80% of Jordanians are considered overweight. Being overweight increases risk of numerous diseases including diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease. The holy month of Ramadan can be considered as a golden opportunity for change on the spiritual and physical level as exercising while fasting is a great method to lose extra weight. Although there is a common misconception that the body does not have energy to exercise while fasting, which is not true. Light to medium intensity work outs, such as aerobics or walking, are ideal from 1-2 hours before iftar as the body would be in the best state to burn fat as most of the glycogen (sugars stored in the muscles) have been consumed.
Read the following recommendations and tips for exercising during Ramadan:
- As mentioned, the best time to lose weight is 1-2 hours before iftar.
- Exercising 2-3 hours after eating iftar can assist with digestion and getting the most nutrition out of the food.
- You should keep in mind that exercise is not the only factor in losing weight, diet and resting is also very important.
- It is preferred not to do a high intensity work out right before iftar as it induces dehydration.
- You should compensate for water lost during exercising by drinking at least 2 litres of water between iftar and suhoor meals.
- If you suffer from non-communicable diseases such as diabetes or hypertension, please consult with a physician and a certified fitness trainer on your ability to exercise.
- Don't forget stretching, warm up, and cool down exercises of about 5 minutes when exercising.
- We do not recommend to exercise before iftar for those who are trying to maintain or increase muscle mass, suffer from heart disease and hypertension, old age, and when it is very hot.
We wish you all to invest your time during the holy month to reach your physical, fitness, and spiritual goals and to make Jordan healthier.
The Palestine Hospital family wishes you health and a Ramadan mubarak.