Ramadan is the best prescription for holistic healthy life — Dr. Amir
Ramadan is the best prescription that enables the faithful to lead a holistic healthy life, according to an eminent Saudi physician. Dr. Ashraf Amir, executive director of Jeddah International Medical Center (IMC) and president of Saudi Indian Healthcare Forum, said that Ramadan is the ideal time for the faithful to redesign and redefine their life in accordance with the Holy Qur’an to achieve wellness in this life and salvation in the Hereafter.
He made the remarks while delivering a presentation on a Ramadan dialogue session titled “The beacon beckoning” here on Tuesday. Indian Consul General Mohammed Shahid Alam was the chief guest at the session organized by Goodwill Global Initiative (GGI), in association with Jeddah National Hospital (JNH).
Dr. Amir’s speech was focused on the association between wellness, Ramadan and the Holy Qur’an, and he specially referred to “Our planet, our health,” the theme of this year’s World Health Day, which falls on April 7. Highlighting WHO’s focus on urgent actions to keep humans and the planet healthy and ensuring well-being of societies, he said that Ramadan enables Muslims to achieve spiritual wellbeing along with the WHO’s health concept of physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and absence from disease.
He said that the Holy Qur’an presents a complete code for Muslims’ personal, social, and spiritual life. “The health benefits of fasting include normalizing blood sugar level, lowering cholesterol, improving digestive system, detoxifying for a full-month, enhancing will power, and reducing mental stress. “Along with this, the fasting will be instrumental in fostering values of socialization and strengthening family bonds, and reinforcing spirituality by being closer to God through increasing worship and becoming compassionate and empathetic with lending a helping hand to the poor and destitute,” he said.
Dr. Amir said Ramadan is the right time to develop a healthy lifestyle. He underlined the need to practice regular physical exercise and take balanced diet. “Islam discourages overeating and calls for taking balanced food, which will reduce 40 percent of heart diseases. It is ideal to have fruit and vegetables half portion of food intake while protein and starch the remaining half,” he said while noting that Ramadan is an ideal time to get rid of many bad habits such as smoking, which kills 50 percent of smokers.
In his keynote speech, Consul General Shahid Alam recalled his childhood Ramadan memories. “I was born and brought up in a colliery area in the northern Indian state of Jharkhand where Muslims represent a small segment of the local population and no way to hear adhan (call to prayer) from the mosque. So grandfather closely watched and alerted us time for iftar and we, the children, used to run enthusiastically around the neighborhood and say loudly that it is time for breaking fast,” he said. The Consul General urged the Indian community members to lend a helping hand to those members of the society who lost jobs and struggling to make ends meeting.
JNH Chairman V.P. Mohammed Ali delivered introductory speech. GGI President Ismail Maritheri presided over the function. General Secretary Hassan Cheruppa welcomed the gathering while JNH Vice Chairman V.P. Ali Mohammed Ali proposed the vote of thanks. Renowned Qur’an reciter and motivational speaker Qari Imran Khan recited a few verses from the Holy Qur’an. Several prominent figures from the Saudi and Indian communities attended the dialogue session and the iftar party.