If you are preparing for your IELTS test this month while observing Ramadan, we have some handy tips and thoughts to help you make better choices and optimise the benefits of your fast.
Be well prepared
Plan everything in advance and revise regularly. Last-minute revisions can cause stress and allow panic to set in, something that you do not need before a test.
Revising on an empty stomach is never a good idea, so consider changing your routine to one that factors in enough revision, prayer, rest and meal times.
Do not skip Suhoor (pre-dawn meal)! Sleep may be more appealing than food at that hour, but it will be the meal that will keep you sane before you break your fast, hours later.
Stock up on food, especially dishes that you can make in advance, and then freeze and reheat when you want to serve them. This will save you so much precious time during Ramadan.
After fasting from dawn to sunset, you will be hungry and may want to devour all your favourite food. Do your best to include foods from all five food groups to ensure a well-balanced diet.
Try as much as possible to avoid heavily processed and fast-burning foods such as biscuits, chocolates, cakes and sweets as they may leave you feeling slow and lazy. Instead consume foods that will help release energy slowly throughout your fast. They include food rich in fibre, namely bran cereals, whole wheat, seeds, fruit, green beans, basmati rice, lentils, vegetables, oats, meat, fish and poultry.
Drink water! If you are not a fan you could try making some juice instead, but avoid caffeine content in drinks such as tea, coffee and cola.
Eat in moderation, always opt for normal sized, healthy meals.
Try not to wear yourself out in the gym. Light exercise, yoga, meditation may be a better option as they will help place less stress on your body and allow you to relax more.
If you can’t miss out on training, consider breaking your fast with a shake and fruits (something light) and head out to the gym. Have a complete meal after you work out because then your body is primed to move nutrients to your muscles instead of storing them as fat.
Stay hydrated as much as possible. It affects the overall performance of the body.