Modern medicine has proved with no doubts that fasting is not just a voluntary and devotional act done by an individual according to his personal and ideological convictions and wishes, but is a natural and innate phenomenon that the body needs in order to perform its vital functions with high efficiency and great quality. Unsurprisingly this information corresponds to what was said in the Quran about fasting, Allah (SWT) says in the Holy Quran: “And that you fast, is better for you if only you know”. [Al-Baqara: 184].
Besides its spiritual and devotional aspects and purposes in Islam, fasting provides the human being with health benefits, it helps the body to put up toxins and get rid of damaged cells, which increases the body's health and strength rather than unhealthiness and weakness as is common among some people. Fasting also helps in reducing the ratio of fats and blood sugar, it strengths the immune system, and promotes healthy eating habits as well.
Doctors and researchers confirm that the human body is exposed to toxins found in the air, water and unhealthy food. Over the years the body accumulate these toxins in large amounts and becomes unable to get rid of them, and consequently the human being feels weak and confused. In this case fasting is the perfect solution, because the regular refrain from eating and drinking contributes to get rid of those toxins, and helps clean the body of impurities and waste.
Fasting also improves the digestive system functions which allows it to get important periods of rest. Thus, levels of energy production gradually rise, so the body can maintain fluids balance and stabilize foods digestion rates.
Nutritionists also indicates that fasting helps to reduce the amount of calories per day, and helps the body to eliminate excess fats, toxins and damaged tissues, and therefore enables the fasting person to lose weight and to gain a healthy body, subject to compliance with Ramadan’s health conditions such as eating less, exercising more, and avoiding excessive sleeping and laziness.
Fasting helps producing glucose by breaking down glycogen stocked in the liver to provide energy and reduce insulin production, and thus makes the body organs, such as intestines, liver, gallbladder, and pancreas rest, which helps detoxifying and cleansing the blood of potential poisons.
In addition, scientific Researches show the significant role played by fasting to promote healthy eating habits, by surprisingly reducing the appetite to eat canned and fast foods, and to stimulate willingness for healthy and natural foods such as water, vegetables and fruits.
Despite the considerable number of addiction treatments across the world, recent scientific studies have emphasized the effective role played by fasting for regular and long periods of time in the facing addiction to nicotine and caffeine among others. With time, a fasting person learns to resist the unbridled desire in these substances, and his body learns to restrain this caprice.
Glory to Allah (SWT), who has legislated the month of Ramadan and has ordained us to fast and accomplish Qiyam, blessed is he who knows its worth and harvests its spiritual fruits. Raja Bin Haiwah narrated that Abu Umamah said: “I came to the Messenger of Allah and said: Tel l me of something that I may take (learn) from you. He said: Take to fasting, for there is nothing like it". The Prophet (pbuh) said as narrated by Tabarani: “Fast and you will be healthy”.
Written by: Amine Hilal