RIYADH: As part of its efforts to raise awareness during Ramadan, the Saudi Ministry of Health has published dietary advice and tips on its Twitter and other social media sites for fasting Muslims.
The tips include a selection of foods perfect for rehydration, including vegetables and fruits, and of complex carbohydrates like brown bread which contribute to stabilizing blood sugar levels.
As fasting people spend up to 15 hours without food at a time, the ministry suggests starting iftar meals with dates, soup and light foods rich in vitamins and easy to digest. In addition, diversity is essential, with protein-rich ingredients including meat and dairy products contributing to cell building and a feeling of satisfaction and fullness.
Concentrated, canned and powdered juices, however, should be avoided, as they are high in sugar, artificial colors and flavors, and are poor in nutritional value. The instant hit of glucose to the body may offer short term relief, but will also lead to a spike in blood sugar levels, followed by a crash, causing fatigue and dehydration.