Drinking coffee in the morning for that “pick me up feeling” is an all too familiar and enjoyable habit for many of us. But come Ramadan and the thought of stopping this stimulating ritual will definitely seem difficult.
You are also probably aware that in the early days of the Holy month, a sudden break in your coffee routine usually leads to a feeling of tiredness, and sometimes even a headache.
But we’ve got good news for you. There is a way to reduce your intake gradually without feeling the unpleasant effects of stopping suddenly. Better still, we’ll tell you how you can still enjoy drinking your coffee during the month of Ramadan!
COFFEE IS A NATURAL STIMULANT
Have you ever wondered why you might feel wide awake after your cup of coffee? That is quite simply because coffee contains caffeine which gives its unique flavor and aroma. Additionally, it gives you a feeling of alertness, helps you overcome fatigue and drowsiness, and prepares you for the day ahead!
COFFEE IS PACKED WITH ANTIOXIDANTS
Did you know that coffee contains many antioxidants which help prevent diseases such as heart disease?
Every day your body is exposed to harmful external and internal factors that can cause free radicals to circulate in our bodies, increasing cell damage and the risk of contracting many diseases. Which is why, consuming foods and drinks rich in antioxidants will help your body fight off these substances and prevent you from getting ill.
SO HOW SHOULD YOU ADJUST YOUR COFFEE INTAKE PRIOR TO RAMADAN?
If you are a coffee drinker, simply follow the steps detailed below to avoid any unpleasant feelings when you stop drinking coffee in the morning:
- Two weeks before Ramadan:If you were drinking 3 cups of coffee a day, start by having half your first cup with decaffeinated coffee and the other half with caffeinated coffee for the first 2-3 days. By the end of the first week gradually increase it to one whole cup decaffeinated and 2 cups caffeinated.
- One week before Ramadan:Gradually try to have 2 decaffeinated cups by following the previous method (half Decaffeinated, half caffeinated until it is all decaffeinated). Make sure to have your caffeinated cup two hours after Maghreb prayers in order to prepare yourself for the routine of Ramadan.
ENJOYING YOUR COFFEE DURING RAMADAN!
- Avoid breaking your fast on a cup of coffee, since caffeine would lead to the release of gastric juices on an empty stomach and in turn hurt your gastric mucosa. The ideal food to break your fast with is 2-3 dates, because they will provide you with the sugar your body requires, especially your brain.
- You can have your cup of coffee two hours after you complete your Iftar meal. This way you would have allowed plenty of time for your body to adjust its blood glucose level with a balanced Iftar. A cup of coffee would come in handy also because it might also keep you alert in case you feel sleepy after your Iftar meal.
- If you enjoy the taste of coffee late at night, try a decaffeinated cup before you sleep (which would still have beneficial antioxidants). You can also opt for herbal teas such as thyme or chamomile which are healthy and soothing.
- If you wake up for Suhour just before the Athan, you can enjoy a cup of coffee along with your balanced meal. This will help you stay alert throughout your long day of fasting.
Remember that a balanced and healthy food intake and adequate fluid replenishment are key to providing you with the energy necessary for your body. And coffee is the boost that you need, to increase your sense of alertness and concentration.