Islamic Culture & Photo Blog – Muslim Blog

Ramadan- Plan a Food Schedule

ramadan kareem 600x450 Ramadan Plan a Food Schedule

Ramadan is just around the corner! We should start to plan and prepare ourselves for the holy month and get the most out of the blessed days. But, we forget one main concern: food. As with anything important, it is always good to be prepared.

Make Your Weekly Ramadan Meal Plan

Thinking of what to cook takes about as much time and effort as the actual task.Make a schedule for one or two weeks and rotate it during the month, or make it for all 30 days! Put it up on the fridge so you see it constantly, are prepared and in the mindset of what needs to be done, rather than scouring through your recipe books trying to
locate your menu at the last minute.

Stock Up on Dry Groceries

The whole process of making a grocery list, going to the store, shopping and then putting them away is more time and energy consuming than most of us realise. This includes doing the bulk of grocery shopping for things that can be stocked up. Narrowing the list down to just perishables every week,means that the chore of doing groceries does not seem like such a big task anymore and can be done in minimum time.

Share the Workload

Division of labor is a wonderful thing. This applies to making all the samosas/other snacks before Ramadan or even the chores of the house during the month itself. Get your kids involved in cleaning up after themselves, setting the table and helping you around the house within their capacity.Let them know the amount of reward they get with the right intention is multiplied during Ramadan.

Manage your time to Finish your Kitchen Work

This will greatly help maintain your routine. It will ensure that you are not cooking right up until the adhan for the Maghrib prayer. Make sure you start early in order to be done early to make the most of the blessed time before iftar.

 Eat Healthy

  • During Ramadan it’s important to eat healthy and stay healthy.
  • Drink lots of water. Proper hydration is essential.
  • Replace sugar with fruit when possible, Sugar robs our bodies of minerals and vitamins.
  • Try eating whole wheat bread and unpolished rice.
  • Avoid foods high in salt such as pickles, salty crackers and nuts, and canned foods.
  • Do not over eat. This might cause indigestion.
  • Choose fresh vegetables as they contain higher amounts of vitamins and minerals.
  • Use fresh fruits to prepare juices and serve them in moderation.
  • Use low fat milk and other low fat dairy products.
  • Avoid using butter and ghee in cooking and substitute them with vegetable oils in small amounts.
  • Try using lean meat, fish and skinless chicken, and prepare them by grilling, boiling and baking rather than frying
  • Try and avoid having a large quantity of starters and sweets which will lead to weight gain
  • Walk or participate in some kind of physical activity.

Health FAQs

Should a person with diabetes fast?

  • People who have their diabetes under control, either by their diet or using tablets, may fast. However, their GP may require them to change their medication to help them take tablets outside fasting times. Those who need insulin to control their diabetes should not fast

I get severe migraines when I don’t eat and they get worse when I fast. Should I fast?

  • People with uncontrolled migraines should not fast. However, managing your migraines is possible with the right medicine and with changes to the person’s lifestyle. Ask your GP for further advice on controlling your migraines.

Should a person with high or low blood pressure fast?

  • People with well-controlled high blood pressure may fast. Their GP may require a change to their medicine to help them take tablets outside fasting times. Someone with low blood pressure who is otherwise well and healthy may fast. They must drink enough fluid and have enough salt.

Is fasting harmful when a woman is expecting a baby? Must pregnant women fast?

  • There’s medical evidence to show that fasting in pregnancy is not a good idea. If a pregnant woman feels strong and healthy enough to fast, especially during the early part of the pregnancy, she may do so. If she doesn’t feel well enough to fast, Islamic law gives her clear permission not to fast, and to make up the missed fasts later. If she is unable to do this, she must perform fidyah (a method of compensation for a missed act of worship).

Is Ramadan a good time to quit smoking?

  • Yes. Smoking is wasteful and seriously bad for your health. Ramadan is a great opportunity to change many unhealthy habits, and smoking is definitely one of them.

Can I use an asthma inhaler during Ramadan?

  • Muslim experts differ on this issue. Some say that using an asthma inhaler isn’t the same as eating or drinking, and is therefore permitted during fasting. In their view, people with asthma can fast and use their inhalers whenever they need to. But other scholars say that the inhaler provides small amounts of liquid medicine to the lungs, so it breaks the fast. They say that people with poor control of their asthma must not fast until good control is achieved. Some people with asthma may opt for longer-acting inhalers so that they can fast. See your GP for further advice.

Can a person fast if they are getting a blood transfusion in hospital?

  •  No. A person receiving a blood transfusion is advised not to fast on medical grounds. They may fast on the days when no transfusions are required.

Could dehydration become so bad that you have to break the fast?

  • Yes. You could have harmful levels of water loss if you were poorly hydrated (not drinking enough water) before the fast. Poor hydration can be made worse by weather conditions, and even everyday activities like walking to walk or housework. If you produce very little or no urine, feel disorientated and confused, or faint due to dehydration, you must stop fasting and have a drink of water or other fluid. Islam doesn’t require you harm yourself in fulfilling the fast. If a fast is broken, it will need to be compensated for by fasting at a later date.

Can I fast while I have dialysis?

  • People on peritoneal dialysis must not fast and should perform fidyah. Haemodialysis is performed about three times a week, and causes significant shifts of fluids and salts within the body. Such patients must not fast and should perform fidyah.

Do people normally lose weight during Ramadan?

  • Some people do lose weight, but others may not. It is recommended that meals eaten during Ramadan be light, but most people can’t resist sampling special sweets and foods associated with Ramadan.

I am on regular medication. Can I still fast?

  •  If the medicine needs to be taken during fasting, do not fast. If this medication is required as treatment for a short illness, you can compensate for missed fasts by fasting on other days when you are well.If you are on long-term medication then you could talk to your GP whether to change your medication, so that you can take it outside the time of the fast. If your disease is unstable or poorly controlled, do not fast. Those who are unable to do the missed fasts later, due to the long-term use of medication, should do fidyah.

Does a breastfeeding woman have to fast?

  • No. Islamic law says a breastfeeding mother does not have to fast. Missed fasts must be compensated for by fasting or fidyah once breastfeeding has stopped.

Right of children in the eyes of Muhammad PBUH

May 20th, 2013
by Sufia

muslim children pray 600x567 Right of children in the eyes of Muhammad PBUH

Prophet Muhammad PBUH the last messenger of Allah Almighty was sent down on earth as a blessing for the entire universe. He presented to us the Glorious Quran which contains all the relevant information following which a great life can be spent on earth which can also earn benefits for the Muslims in the world which lies here after.

Islam is the religion which has been designed by Allah Almighty keeping in consideration all the aspects related with humanity and requirements of mankind.It was Holy Prophet PBUH who was allotted with the responsibility of introducing Islam to the mankind. He emerged as a bright light in the darkness of illiteracy which was prevailing in Arabia more than 1400 years ago. He showed the right path to mankind and made every effort to convey the teachings of Islam to the masses.

He was pure and full of love for everyone and especially for children there was a special place in his heart. Holy Prophet PBUH always stressed upon the fulfillment of the rights that have been allotted by Allah Almighty to children. He once said that

“Observe justice in treatment with your children in the same way in which you anticipate them to observe justice in being kind and good to you.”

Holy Prophet stressed on the point that it is the right of children that they should be provided with food, clothing and protection till they reach an age where they become capable of taking care of themselves. Parents should make arrangements for allotting their children with proper education and a good environment.

The rights to be fed, clothing and shelter are not only dictated for those children who have their parents living with them, but also orphans are allotted with the same rights. Islam being the religion which shows compatibility with human nature clearly defines human rights and all the due respect and importance has been allotted to the rights of children.

Holy Prophet PBUH through his teachings and acts made it very clear that children deserve to be loved and taken care of. He was always very humble and kind towards children he used to give his blessings to them and instructed his companions that

“I give my Salaam to children and deference them and Muslims should go along with my actions and always be warm and loving with children.”

Speaking about children Holy Prophet PBUH mentioned that

“O Muslims, O fathers and mothers, O my retinue, be kind and sympathetic towards children, for the one who is not kind to children has no place among the Muslims.”

There are many incidents related with the life of Holy Prophet PBUH where we see that how much kind and loving his attitude was towards children.

He told parents to raise their children in the best possible manner and special attention should be given to their rights. The examples which are left by our Holy Prophet PBUH clearly dictate that Islam gives a very high value to the rights of children and we need to pay attention to this matter.

The famous Muslim Women

January 25th, 2013
by Sufia

Women Protest The famous Muslim Women

The Quran and Hadith shares equal rights of all men and women. Both have the right to be educated and to have the freedom of speech, choice and expressions. Today in the western world many people do not think positively about Islam. The western media has portrayed the image of Muslim women very badly. They claim that Islam does not allow the right of women to be educated or to work.

They claim that in Islam, women are treated as servants, but in reality, this is all false. Extremist groups such as Al Qaeda and Taliban have created such bad image of Islamic women. When they conquered Afghanistan, Iraq and upper areas of Pakistan, they destroyed all girls’ schools, colleges and universities.

They banned educated women working and banned them going out of the house without a male Mahram. In the Quran, it is mentioned clearly that men and women are equal, the prophet Muhammad Sallalaho Alayhi Wasalam has marked his words that men and women have equal rights to be educated and to have a job.

To erase this misconception of Muslim women being uneducated, this article will highlight some famous Muslim women in the history of the world. Way back in history in Prophet Muhammad Sallalaho Alayhi Wasalam’s time the prominent women were Ume-e-Aiman, Um-al-Fadl, Asma bint-e-Abibakr, Urwa, Asma bint-e-Umais, Ash-Shifa bint-e-Abdullah and Fatima bint-e-Qais.

The female warriors were Khwala bint al Azwar, Azda bint al Haris, Nusaibah bin Ka’ab, Umaimah bint-e-Qiyas,. Women scholars were Hazrat Ayesha, Asma binte-Abi Bakar, Zainab bint-e Abdullah, Hafsah bint-e-Umar and many more. Famous Muslim architects of those times were Safiyah, Banfsha bint Abdullah, Mariam bin Shams, and Al Udar al Kareema. Fatima al Fihri was the Muslim woman who founded the first university in the world, which is still present in Morocco, called University of Al Karaouine.

Razia Sultana ruled Delhi from 1236 to 1239, Shajarat ad-Durr ruled Egypt from 1250 to 1257. Benazir Bhutto was the first female prime Minister in the whole Asia region, and the first Muslim woman to be the Prime Minister. Dr. Qanta Ahmed is one of the best doctors known in the USA. Rabia Z is one of the most known Muslim Fashion designers, even among the western fashion world. She is known for her designs in the modest clothing.

Atife Jahjaga is the world’s youngest female president of Kosovo. Nana Asma’u was the princess of Nigeria, she was a poet and a teacher, and she worked for women to acquire education. Laleh Bakhtiar is an American woman, the first women to translate the Quran into English language. Anousheh Ansari is an American, the first female women to be in space. Many other famous Muslim women are great doctors, businessperson, politicians, designers, actors and singers. This shows that Muslim women are educated and they do have all the rights almost equal to those rights of a man.

The best and effective way to lose weight, according to our Prophet Muhammad’s advice

January 1st, 2013
by Sufia

If you are Muslim and you are able, it is worth it to give the Quranic diet a try

If you want to lose weight, go on a Quranic diet. Which means get most of your calories from meat, dairy, and fruit. Use olive oil and honey. Avoid sugar, white flour, and other processed foods. Don’t eat grains or nuts if you can avoid them, because these are mentioned very little in the Quran. Meat is mentioned 100 times, while grains are mentioned only 7 times.

weight loss islam The best and effective way to lose weight, according to our Prophet Muhammads advice

The Quranic diet is very similar to the recently popular paleolithic diet. It focuses on natural hunter-gatherer foods, the foods that our earliest ancestors enjoyed, which is mostly meat and fruit.

According to Why We Get Fat, the most scientific nutrition book written in recent history, the most important reason why people get fat is because of eating foods containing sugar and flour. The reason is that while humans cannot eat too much meat (because eating too much meat triggers human disgust responses), they can eat a lot more than they need of simple carbohydrates like sugar and flour because they do not trigger disgust responses.

Additionally, when we eat too much fat and protein, our bodies have mechanisms for throwing the unnecessary amounts we eat out. But our bodies have no such mechanism for getting rid of extra carbohydrates. When we eat too much carbohydrates, they get stored in our bodies as fat. They do not get thrown out. And this is the simple reason behind why we get fat.

Therefore a meat & fruit focused diet is a great way of keeping your weight in check. Note that fruit juice is fattening as well, you should eat the whole fruit, because fruit juice is a lot more concentrated in sugars than whole fruit. A glass of orange juice contains the concentrated sugars found in 10 oranges. You don’t normally sit down and eat ten oranges (I hope).

Another important concept is not eating too much. This was the original focus of this article. Prophet Muhammad SAW says:

Let people fill one third of their stomach with food, one third with drink and one third with nothing.”*

People who are used to a non-Quranic diet can’t imagine not eating until they feel full. The reason is what I mentioned above; bread and sugar do not trigger our satiation responses. Our bodies want to get infinite amounts of bread and sugar. But if you are on the Quranic diet, you will feel satiated earlier thanks to all the protein and fat found in meat, olives, and olive oil.

If you have read things opposite to what I recommend, please be aware that nutritional science is one of the least scientific branches of the sciences. The most important thing at the end of the day is the effect of your diet on you. If you are Muslim and you are able, it is worth it to give the Quranic diet a try.

*Narrated by al-Tirmidhi (1381), Ibn Maajah (3349); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah (2265).


Quranic Names for boys and girls

December 29th, 2012
by Sufia

So I’ve been reading (and there is always room for improvement of course) in an Arabic & English Quran since I last posted.

Lately what has interested me is the Arabic words from the Quran that can be used as names for Muslim babies. My name can be considered a “Quranic Name” and it’s mentioned in more than one surah. :]
I’ve compiled a list of some of the ones I noticed and liked while reading. I tried to narrow their location down as best as I could (but I don’t have the Quran in front of me now).
Cute muslim baby Quranic Names for boys and girls
  • Abrar: Obedient believers. (Last Juz, maybe surah Inshiqaq)
  • Tasneem : Water in Paradise that falls from heights. (Last Juz)
  • LuLu: Pearl. For girls. (Surah Ar Rahman)
  • Marjaan: Coral. For girls. (Surah Ar Rahman. The ayah goes “lu’lu’ wal marjaan’ so these could be the name of twin girls maybe)
  • Bayaan:  Eloquent demonstration. For both boys and girls, but it is more popular for girls. (Surah Ar Rahman.)
  • Bayyinah: Truth that is demonstrated eloquently, Allah uses this adjective to describe the Quran. It is derived from the same root as the previous name. For girls only. (Last Juz)
  • Illiyeen: The noble book that contains the deeds of righteous people on the Day of Judgement. For females. You could call her Lily for short (Last Juz.)
  • Shams: The Sun. For boys. Can be made feminine name by saying Shamsah.(All over the Quran)
  • Nur: Light. For girls. (as in sunlight). (Many places in the Quran)
  • Kareem: Generous. (Many places in the Quran)
  • Naeem: Bountiful. For boys. (Last juz, Mutafifeen)
  • Majeed : One who has greatness and valor. For boys only, its feminine form is Majeedah. (Last juz, Buruj)
  • Salsabil:  It’s the name of fountain in Paradise. For girls. (Insaan.)
  • Raadiyah: Someone who is content. For girls only. (Last juz, Gaashiya.)
  • Raadhi: Someone who is content, for boys.
In conclusion, most of the Quranic names can be found in the last Juz. Probably because the last juz talks about heaven a lot (and punishment a lot too). The most unique names come from this part of the Quran, in my opinion. It would be cool to name your daughter after a fountain in jannah — How awesome!– and most others will not have that name since it’s rare.

I’d love it if others could add to the list. I’d like to compile a long list of names some day and pass them out to friends that are pregnant.


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