Get healthy by fasting!

There it was, on a huge rock in the middle of a village: oruç tut sıhhat bul, meaning ‘Get healthy by fasting’. It seems the connection between fasting during Ramadan and getting healthy is being made more and more often.

In the first place, it is of course crap to say that fasting during Ramadan makes you healthier. On the contrary: abstaining from food without drinking only leads to toxic substances piling up in your body. Besides, in the middle of summer you can easily faint if you don’t drink, especially all the people working in outdoor jobs. Nothing healthy about that.

But even more importantly, where does it come from, this increasing focus on the non- existent healthy side of fasting during Ramadan? This year more slogans  in public places, even those hung between the minarets of mosques, seem to focus on it. Is it needed to motivate people to join the fasting month? What happened to the old-fashioned reasons for religious fasting, namely contemplation and sharing? Are they no longer considered appealing enough these days?

2 thoughts on “Get healthy by fasting!”

  1. Very good point. I guess they need to prove that fasting is at least not unhealthy because reasonably a religion shouldn’t command something like that, but as you pointed out, a slogan like “we have to fast, because we are obliged to” would be much better because religions are not reasonable after all and nobody cares.

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  2. Actually, fasting and calorie restriction, ie reducing the amount of consumed calories, has been shown to have numerous health benefits, besides the obvious weight loss, and has been shown to extend lifespan of the animals that it was tested on.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fasting
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intermittent_fasting
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caloric_restriction

    So it is not totally false advertising.

    Not drinking water could be dangerous as it could lead to dehydration. But people with healthy kidneys who do not work in hight temperatures should not have problems.
    Fasting does not stop you from urinating during the day. In a day or two kidneys adjust to the new water input schedule. It is just important to drink the same amount of water during the alotted hours. But of course there is risk that people drink less than they do usually.

    They are probably exaggerating the benefits of fasting 1 month a year, but you can’t blame a religion for trying to promote its practices, that’s what they do. I don’t think it’s right to tell people how should they practice religion or what they religion should be about.

    Of course if they start spreading really false health information, Ministry of Health should get involved and stop false information from spreading.

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