Fasting is a beautiful truth serum. It points out exactly where we are out of balance, where we are taking too much and not giving back enough. This goes for our body, mind, spirit and life. We might forget that we’ve been overspending their assets, but they do not.
The way body communcates is that it will use different symptoms which will create discomfort and pain for us. Knowing how to read them can give us a clue on what direction we need to take to get out of our ‘health debt’.
So let’s check some of the body’s cues out:
1. Muscle cramps – everything from subtle muscle twitches to actual spasms, everything from eye lids to hands, legs, back, jaw or any other muscles in the body.
This is Magnesium (Mg) deficiency. Magnesium is a mineral that helps all types of muscles relax (skeletal, smooth and heart muscle). You need to take between 500-1000 mg Mg daily. Look for Magnesium Citrate as a form of Mg for best absorption. The stronger the cramps the higher the dose. High blood pressure, irregular heart beat, abdominal cramps, menstrual cramps, overactive bladder, are also some other signs of unbalanced muscle contractions, and can be alleviated by Mg.
(Magnesium supplements that I use in my practice and personally are: Ultra Muscleze,
OxCgen, Garden of Life Raw Magnesium.)
Other sources of Mg are raw cacao and everything that contains chlorophyll – green leafy veggies and algae – the best sources are Wheat Grass, Barley grass, Chlorella, Spirulina etc. You can buy them in powdered form (recommended) or as tablets. You can mix them with water, coconut juice, fresh juices or smoothies. I’ve found that the tastiest powdered form of each one of the above is by Pukka. If you want them in tandem Sun Warrior Ormus Green is a great choice.
Magnesium also helps alleviate tension headaches, fatigue, improves the quality of sleep and mood. A do-it-all mineral indeed!
Lack of water, imbalance in the gut flora and lazy gut muscles.
So this is what you can do:
a. Drink water (slightly salty!) plus fruit and veggie juices/smoothies! (2-3 l of per day). I’ve written extensively about this topic, so check out my earlier posts for more info (H2WOW!). Scraped gel from 2-3 Aloe Vera leaves (I blend them whole) or a cup of juice per day gives this regime a definite upgrade.
(Pukka’s Aloe Vera Juice is by far the best and tastiest that I’ve come in contact with.)
b. More fibre! Drink Trio Fantastico, but also eat soaked seeds such as linseeds, psyllium seeds, chia seeds. They will give your gut a great work out!
Take 1-2 tablespoons and soak them in one tall glass of water or coconut juice for 4-6 hours. You can toss in a couple of chopped dates, prunes and figs for extra flavor and fibre. It becomes a gelatinous mixture that you can eat as is, or throw in the blender for a whirl.
c. Probiotics, beneficial gut bacteria which are paramount for a healthy balance in the gut. These good guys fall victim to our unhealthy eating habits, and need some serious back-up. You should go for at least 7 billion, and at least 5-10 different strains per capsule. More is better!
They also prevent bad breath, flatulence, hemorrhoids and other diseases of the gastro-intestinal tract.
(SunBiotics is a raw chewable probiotic supplement that tastes like toffee and has 15 billion bacteria. Amazing stuff! Udo’s Choice Super 8 probiotics is a great alternative as well.)
Otherwise, kefir (made from unpasteurized milk), unpasteurized miso, sauer kraut and other naturally fermented pickled veggies, are a great source of beneficial gut bacteria, plus they are a great salad booster, so make sure that you have them on your ‘to eat’ list every day.
d. In case of a more serious case of constipation (2 days or more), a special task force is required. Senna Tea is a great laxative (2-3 cups/day for a day or two) or Magnesium Sulphate or Epsom Salts (1-3 teaspoons mixed with a glass of water once or twice per day – this one is reserved for the bold and the beautiful).
3. Bleeding gums, dry flaky skin, skin rashes, bags or dark circles under the eyes, dizziness, low blood pressure, extreme fatigue and sense of weakness are signs of general fuel deficiency. See to it that you take a Multivitamin supplement that has all vitamins and minerals in it (B-vitamin complex needs to be included), high quality Protein (such as hemp powder, quinoa, buckwheat, chia seeds, nuts and other seeds, and the super green powders enumerated under point 1), and Essential Fatty Acids (Omega 3&6) that you get through nuts and seeds, and through cold pressed oils (hemp, linseed , olive, pumpkin, sesame, sunflower etc).
(Great raw multivitamin brands and protein formulas are : Innate, Garden of Life, Sun Warrior, New Chapter. Great mixture of different oils providing Omega 3, 6 and 9 is Udo’s Oil.)
4. Some of you have complained that your sleep after Sahoor is really disturbed by frequent urination. A simple solution is to drink your first liter, or more, of water and other fluids directly after you break the fast, and not overload during Sahoor. This way your body will have time to process the amount of liquid over a longer period of time.
These are some general guidelines and recommendations that are intended to help you interpret your body’s language, and communicate back effectively.
If you have more than three symptoms described the above, try to continue using supplements even after Ramadan, at least for 6 months or longer for best results. Do not worry if you cannot find these suggested supplements, use those that you can find and afford. I suggested raw food based supplements which, in my opinion, are easiest absorbed by the body, but there are also really good synthetic brands. Try at least not to buy your supplements in ordinary grocery shops, opt for those sold in natural pharmacies.
This is a first aid kit to help alleviate some of your troubles. I recommend of course that you consult your physician, who can run specific tests and knows your health history, especially if the symptoms are persistent or recurring, for a specific treatment.