It can be tempting to eat a big meal after fasting all day, but it’s important to avoid overeating during iftar. While iftar is the time to replenish your energy levels, try to remember that Ramadan isn’t about overindulgence and your evening meal isn’t intended to make up for the hours spent without food.
Instead, it’s best to opt for a simple, well-portioned meal – and to avoid eating too fast to prevent indigestion, bloating, and heartburn.
A common Ramadan tradition is to break the fast with one or two dates. Dates contain important minerals (potassium and magnesium) and natural sugars that help the body’s blood glucose levels to return to normal quickly. They can also satisfy hunger, help prevent overeating, and aid in digestion.
If you struggle with overeating during iftar, purposely slowing down and taking time to reflect on what Ramadan is about can help to recentre your mind on the task in front of you. Ramadan is a time to tune into your faith, practise discipline and control, and spend quality time with friends and family.
Mindful eating and cooking can also be a useful tool, as it’s essentially a form of meditation. It involves slowing down and engaging all of your senses with the food that you prepare and eat.
Eating mindfully also encourages behaviours like chewing thoroughly, eliminating distractions, and focusing on how the food makes you feel. You can find out more in this beginner’s guide to mindful eating from Healthline.