Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Mariecar Jara-Puyod, Senior Reporter
The Holy Month of Ramadan is only a week away and a clinical dietician/consultant nutritionist from Dubai has noted some factors to consider, relative to the ensuing Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, even as fasting has been proved to improve general health, the reason for it having become a lifestyle such as the interval or intermittent fasting.
Medeor Hospital’s Juliot Vinolia was asked on whether it is safe to fast at this time when the SARS-CoV2 actively transitions into various forms: “We need to cautiously follow a safe and healthy Ramadan lifestyle for the following concerns-some variants spreading aggressively easily among the young people; the efficacy of the current developed vaccines against the latest variants still under research; the long-term effects of COVID-19 (survivors) might put them at higher risk for chronic diseases and other auto-immune conditions; the mutation of these double variants (may) continue for several years becoming endemic and we are left with no other option than enhancing our health and immunity functions.”
She stressed that everyone, specifically the “COVID-19 positive, the post-COVID and the vaccinated, those exposed to the virus” be attentive to their water intake, be well-hydrated throughout the year because the virus “triggers a cytokine storm increasing inflammatory and blood clotting factors in the body. Dehydration further complicates the side effects of the inflammatory response of an active virus or vaccine.”
Vinolia and Prime Hospital (Dubai) clinical dietician and nutritionist Nour Al Mahmoud reiterated the health benefits of fasting as evidenced in both animal and human research studies from the 1980s decades, demonstrating that doing so allows the body cells, tissues and organs to take a rest, get rejuvenated and restored while diminishing inflammation and oxidative stress.
They differed in opinion on the issue of whether fasting could prevent the attack of SARS-CoV2 as fasting helps one become healthier.
Suggesting that observing healthy Ramadan fasting would also benefit non-Muslims, Vinolia pointed out that fasting is a way against COVID19 because there would be less intake of high carbohydrates that taxes the body and makes one sluggish, less intake of processed sugar, “the feeding zone for pathogens, oxidative stress and tissue damage that lead to cancer, genetic mutation risk, and higher infertility rates.”
She said: “By introducing healthy fasting within limited hours, in line with one’s healthy environment and healthy mind, we can become less dependent from vaccines in the future. Fasting also reduces food wastage, good production and global warming.”
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