In Ramadan intermittent fasting; a month in which Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking during day light (from dawn to dusk), many changes in body metabolic process and blood profile take place –to a varying degrees-.
It is believed that some of these changes have good effect on reducing weight & chances of lifestyle diseases like diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery diseases etc., which we will briefly shed light on.
General body changes happening during Ramadan fasting
- Reducing body weight, and body fat percent.
- Reducing waist circumference.
- Increased high density lipoprotein concentration HDL (good cholesterol) not all studies results are consistent for that matter.
- Disturbed circadian rhythm (biological clock), due to change in sleeping hours.
- No significant changes in systolic & diastolic blood pressure.
- Increased serum uric acid. Could be due to increased consumption of protein foods in some populations and less water intake.
How does fasting aids in weight loss, and reducing the chances of life style diseases?
One: during Ramadan fasting, the body initially uses its glycogen stores in the muscles and liver to yield energy, after couple of hours and depletion of glucose stores, fat becomes the next source of energy, hence aiding in fat burning and weight loss.
Two: reducing waist circumference -due to loss of visceral fat- decreases occurrence of chronic diseases such as diabetes, insulin resistance and dyslipidemia, because abdominal fat accumulation is positively linked to these diseases. Read more about this in metabolic syndrome.
Three: fasting increases concentration of HDL –according to some studies-, which reduces the chances of coronary heart diseases.
You need to keep in mind that the quality and quantity of food consumed in feeding hours highly impact weight loss and lipid profiles as well, so results vary wildly between people, traditional diet habits in Ramadan.