We know that fasting has several health benefits for the body – it detoxifies the liver, it lowers blood pressure, and it increases lifespan. Did you know, however, that it also has an impact on your teeth? When your body goes into deprivation mode, it reallocates the nutrients in your body to where they are most needed. Hence, a greater amount of minerals are deposited to the teeth, strengthening them and preventing decay.
While there are great benefits to the discipline of fasting, there are a few miniscule obstacles to overcome in order to stay comfortable during the fast. Many people will experience some degree of dry mouth. For this reason, it is helpful to sufficiently hydrate between fasts and to avoid diuretic food items such as coffee, tea, chocolate, and sodas.
Because the Ramadan fast does entail closeness to your spiritual self and a detachment from habit, it is the perfect time to meditate on the idea of smoking cessation, which aside from the many diseases and the environmental damage it is responsible for, also greatly affects the longevity of your teeth and the health of your gums.
Lastly, keep fresh herbs, citrus fruits, mild spices (like fennel or cardamom), and probiotic containing foods as part of your pre-dawn breakfast ritual. More important than that, be sure to clean your tongue thoroughly. These are all ways to neutralize breath odors. A healthy microbiota is most essential in keeping your mouth feeling and smelling fresh.
Ramadan is a time of the year for those observing to be resolute, purposeful, and disciplined. We try to carry these virtues on through the remainder of the year. While we use this time to reflect on the purpose of our life, let us also reflect on the sanctity of our health as well.