Health chiefs urge Muslims to make healthy choices this Eid

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MUSLIMS participating in the holy month of Ramadan are being urged to use Eid to reinforce the good habits they have achieved over the past month.

NHS East Lancashire claims many people use the month of fasting to renew their spiritual energies by individual and group prayers, as well as not ingesting any material orally during daylight hours. This includes smoking.

Dr Sohail Bhatti, Interim Director of Public health for NHS East Lancashire said: “If you can manage to go without a cigarette during these long days of fasting [the fast being currently around 17 hours] why not give up altogether?”

“Do you feel different for not smoking? Think about how much better you feel now, think of all the money you have saved in the past month also. Many people also feel better in themselves, because they have a better spiritual base from which to work from – and the improvement in mental well-being is one of the great benefits of the month.”

The Primary Care Trust is also urging you to be careful in the kitchen as Eid is typically a time for family gatherings and a significant amount of cooking, especially when dealing with pans of hot oil or other liquid.

Dr Sohail Bhatti also added: “The fasting of Ramadan also requires a lot of self-control when it comes to food. Use this opportunity to look at your portion sizes and what you eat normally to see if any changes can be made.

“Your stomach capacity may have shrunk. It is healthy to eat and drink not till you are full-to-bursting. Leave space, and it will leave you comfortable.

“Watch and count everything you eat, and it may surprise you just how many snacks you take. Don’t be embarrassed to say you have had too much, and take a token morsel instead.

“Many hosts insist on feeding guests when visiting during Eid. Saying no, or taking a small portion is good for your health, and need not cause offence if explained in this way.”