Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Fasting has many benefits for health. Courtesy iStockphoto.com
Fasting has many benefits for health. Courtesy iStockphoto.com

Food for thought: the health benefits of fasting

Here are seven reasons why fasting during Ramadan is good for you.

In the traditional sense, fasting was seen as a cure-all. Hippocrates, Socrates and Plato were all documented as recommending the practice for the healing of physical diseases and conditions.

The effects of fasting seem to go beyond the physical, with positive effects on mental, emotional and spiritual states, allowing you to feel lighter on all levels as you are cleansing not just physical toxins but also more subtle forms of toxicity.

When undertaken with care, Ramadan can be a very healthy time. Here are seven reasons why, as discussed in the context of fasting by numerous authorities including the holistic health writer Dr Andrew Weil, the chiropractor Dr Ben Kim and the US television presenter Dr Mehmet Oz.

Healing

A powerful therapeutic process that can help people recover from mild to severe health conditions. The most recorded evidence indicate positive effects on conditions such as high blood pressure, asthma, allergies, chronic headaches, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, adult onset diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, psoriasis, eczema and acne.

Rest

A sustained amount of time without food allows your body to rest, a period known as concentrated physiological rest. During this time the body’s own self-healing mechanism is enabled more fully, allowing repair and renewal of damaged cells and organs.

Cleansing

This process also allows the body to cleanse cells of accumulated toxins and waste products as your body literally has more energy to devote to internal cleaning since there is no energy expenditure on digestion.

Protection

Fasting gives your digestive tract time to rest and strengthen its mucosal lining, which is essential for the integrity of the intestinal wall, preventing the leakage of undigested food into the blood stream.

Digestive relief

A strong digestive tract is also essential to protect the blood and inner organs against toxins and lowers your probability of suffering food allergies.

Beauty

Fasting gives you more energy, healthier skin and better quality sleep as a direct result of the concentrated rest and cleansing. Your natural beauty is able to shine through.

Peace

A decrease in anxiety and tension is often reported among those who fast for extended periods.

Laura Holland is a well-being consultant and nutritional therapist. Visit www.BeutifulYou.co.uk

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 This four-bedroom villa covers 4,790 square feet and is part of a new compound in Umm Suqeim.

In photos: Beachside villa in Umm Suqeim, Dubai for Dh800,000

Taking a closer look at a four-bedroom villa in Umm Seqeim, Dubai.

 Suresh Raina is part of the the IPL's Chennai Super Kings team, which take on Kings XI Punjab on April 18 in Abu Dhabi. Photo by Duif du Toit / Gallo Images / Getty Images

Chennai Super Kings cricketer Suresh Raina spotted at Ferrari World

One of the top batsmen and bowlers of the Indian Premier League’s Chennai Super Kings (CSK), Raina spent a day at Ferrari World with some of his team mates, and seemed to particularly enjoy the world’s fastest roller-coaster.

 Shah Rukh Khan plays a shot during a friendly match between the members of the support and administrative staff of Royal Challengers Bangalore and his Kolkata Knight Riders cricket team. Dibyangshu Sarkar / AFP

When the worlds of Bollywood and cricket collide

With the first game of the Indian Premier League beginning today in the UAE, we explore the league’s Bollywood connections, which are as glitzy as they are controversial.

 A rendering of People Abu Dhabi by Crystal. Courtesy People Abu Dhabi by Crystal

People Abu Dhabi by Crystal to open on Saadiyat Island

Abu Dhabi’s nightlife scene just gets better and better. After venues such as O1NE Yas Island and Iris in Yas Marina opening last year, it’s Saadiyat’s turn with the launch of the glamorous People Abu Dhabi by Crystal.

 Dumyé Dolls’s fashionable rag dolls. Rebecca McLaughlin-Duane / The National

Top takeaways from Fashion Forward and where to find them

The ideas and designs that caught our attention and where you can learn more

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National