Are you making the most out of your fasting this Ramadan? Fasting not only affects our physical bodies, but every part of our lives. When we stop the over-indulgence that has become associated with our cultural Ramadan experience, our lives and our priorities become clearer and we can reap the true spiritual and physical benefits of fasting.
Learning how to maximize your fasting will:
- Rest and heal your digestive system
- Help cleanse and detoxify your body
- Make you more aware of your eating patterns and cravings
- Enable greater mental clarity and creativity
- Increase your awareness of your emotional and behavioral patterns
- Give you increased energy levels (after the first few days)
- Allow for inner stillness, enhancing spiritual connection
The Physical Benefits of Fasting
Fasting initiates the body’s own healing mechanisms. As a result, any disease or imbalance in the body is likely to show improvement while on a fast. Similarly, animals fast when they are unwell or trying to recover from a traumatic experience.
The list of physical conditions that have been known to improve with fasting is endless. Some of the conditions that respond the most are allergies, arthritis, digestive disorders of all kinds, skin conditions, cardiovascular disease, and asthma.
The Energetic Benefits of Fasting
Imagine you have a very tight schedule with the longest to-do list that you must complete in your 8-10 hour day. You may feel stressed and unsure of how to prioritize which tasks are more important and which you should leave aside for another time. This is the same thing our body does when we overload it with too much food; it puts some of its “work” aside for another time. After every meal, especially heavy and unhealthy meals, more “work” is loaded on the body. This is why fasting is a beautiful gift for yourself. It is a time of rest and repair for your tired, overworked body.
During fasting, we rest our bodies from the constant cycle of digestion. It is said that around 65% of our energy is spent on digestion. We usually think of food as giving us energy, but we seldom realize that the food we eat required energy to digest. When this energy is freed up, it can be diverted to healing and regeneration. It can detoxify and repair cells, tissues and organs and eliminate foreign toxins. In addition, it will help rest and cleanse the digestive/elimination system.
When you’ve progressed past the stage of dealing with detox symptoms, a fast will have you feeling lighter, more energetic, more enthusiastic, and requiring less sleep. When you’re constantly eating, you tend to feel heavy and tired.
Our bodies know how to heal themselves. We just have to stop overloading it with food and stress. Fasting is a wonderful opportunity to allow healing to take place on all levels. By simultaneously taking a break from food and following a daily spiritual practice, the body will have the perfect conditions needed for healing and self-repair.
Weight loss is, for many, one of the perks of fasting. Due to differences in metabolism and/or body chemistry, exact results will vary from person to person.
Fasting can create many opportunities to gain insights into your patterns of food intake and will help making changes to your habits and lifestyle much easier to integrate.
Although weight loss may occur, fasting for spiritual reasons and to “get healthy” rather than to “lose weight” is a better approach. The anxiety about weight loss may add mental or emotional strain that will likely take away from the complete surrender that occurs when fasting for spiritual reasons. After all, your body is the temple of your soul and it is essential to take care of it and your health if you wish to progress on a spiritual level.
Mental and Emotional Benefits of Fasting
Fasting has been proven to increase mental clarity and focus. It can become a tool in helping you gain better mental, spiritual and physical health. What better time to put this to the test than during the Holy month of Ramadan?
Freeing your mind and body from food will allow you the flexibility, and energy to prioritize the things and activities that are most important to you and focus your energy on connecting with the Divine on a deeper level.
The effects of fasting on our spiritual connection has been very well documented in every religion. Another benefit of fasting is that it promotes journeying deeper into our own being. This process leads to a greater sense of acceptance and understanding of self and also with all the relationships in your life.
Without the constant burden of heavy foods bombarding the system (and after any major detox symptoms have passed), the body begins to take on a lighter, less dense, feeling. This helps to create a subtle separation from ordinary physical reality and everyday distractions, and instead you begin to sense the presence and power of something greater than yourself all around you. With fasting, meditation and prayer become clearer, higher states of consciousness become easier to attain, and messages or guidance from the universe become more visible.
Eating Well During Ramadan
Breaking your fast on healthy, nutritious and easy to digest food is almost as important as the fast itself. Join the 10 Day Vida Ramadan Detox Program to have carefully balanced healing foods delivered daily right to your doorstep. These meals will help you cleanse and heal on all levels. Take the stress and worry away from what to eat and what not to eat this Ramadan and focus on your spiritual experience with the knowledge that your health and your body are also making the most of your fasting. Wishing you a beautiful, happy and blessed Ramadan.