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Friday, September 3, 2010

Ramadhan and Fasting...

So this post is a bit late considering we're approaching the end of Ramadhan (a.k.a. fasting month).  Anyways, Ramadhan began on 11 August 2010 and today is Day 21 (if I counted correctly) which means Hari Raya Aidilfitri or Eid 'Ul-Fitr will be in 9 days *hurrah!*

In Islam, fasting begins at dawn (approximately 10mins before Subuh or morning prayers) until Maghrib or sunset prayers.  During the month of Ramadhan, there'll be loads of food bazaars (aptly named Bazaar Ramadhan) providing a choice of a myriad of food, local cakes and beverages to visitors.  These bazaars start as early as 2.30pm til sunset (around 6.30pm here).  If you're from outside Malaysia, an excellent time to come visit (if you're interested in sampling the food here) is definitely during Ramadhan.  If you have friends here, stay on til the Eid celebrations and get a feel of "open houses" which simply means visiting houses of relatives and friends and you'll be served a host of local delicacies from rendang, curry, serunding to Raya biscuits and cakes.

Muslims all around the world have been abstaining from food and water during the day for the past 3 weeks and some non-Muslims have also joined in to fast to either join their Muslim friends during this Holy month or for health purposes.  I have been acquainted with people who consider fasting as a detox session or an opportunity to shed some extra weight.  I suppose it's easier to refrain from eating and drinking when those around you aren't tempting you to go out for lunch.  *haha*

My fasting experience this year thus far has been a bit different than previous years.  For one thing, it's our first time fasting without the presence of my beloved mummy.  It has been that much more tough on me personally and most nights I cry myself to sleep (which isn't such a good idea since it makes it way harder to wake up in the morning for work).  The fasting month started out a bit shaky for me with me experiencing high stomach acidity.  I could practically feel the acid fumes (for lack of a more suitable word) at the back of my throat which trust me is a nasty feeling to have.  At one point I felt like throwing up and fainting.  No, fasting isn't a bad thing.  I'm just stubborn and refuse to break fast early and forfeit my fasting day to seek medical assistance.  *haha*  After a week or so of roughing through it, my gastric got better.  I think it might be the 1-a-day multivit & mineral tablet that I took.  Gave me more energy throughout the day to.  *double woot for vitamin B*

** Josh Groban singing "To Where You Are" on the radio ** *bliss* &heart;

A few fasting tips for those of you who experience frequent gastric episodes:

  • Make sure to eat a filling meal during sahur or breakfast.  Not too full though.
  • Make sure to let the food settle at least 30 minutes before going back to bed.
  • Don't forget to drink enough water to avoid severe dehydration and dry throat during the day.
  • Don't eat spicy, peppery or excessively oily food during sahur.
  • Minimize or refrain from drinking acidic beverages during the fasting period (i.e. Coca Cola, Lime Juice, tea, etc.)
  • If you feel your stomach acidity is higher than usual, have a glass of isotonic or alkaline drink when you break fast
I generally don't do any exercises or workouts during this month simply because my body can't take any extra physical activities.  Even when I'm performing my daily tasks at work and at home, I get light headed.  This is of course just me.  I have friends who still frequent the gym and workout studios during this time and they're able to exercise just fine.  I have tried exercising during fasting month before but made a personal decision not to because my body is just not up to it.  *haha*

Happy fasting everyone and have a very wonderful Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

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