Actually, It has less to do with starving yourself and more to do with a (sorta) taboo phrase in our society: COUNTING YOUR CALORIES.
Granted, fasting done right may lead to great weight loss but only if you do it right. With that said, I'll lay down how people usually gain rather than lose weight this fasting month:
Buka Puasa- OMG, I'm so hungryyyyy. I wanna eat nasi lemak with ayam goreng rempah, nasi ambang, nasi tomato, Char Kuey Teow. Oh, and not forgetting the yummy kuih! Seri muka, kuih pelita, kuih melaka! Yum! I'll wash it down with Air Tebu too! What's the harm? Puasa right?
In that one session alone, the average Malaysian consumes 4 times more calories than one ought to during dinner. Whereas when we're not fasting a regular health conscious person would:
1) Eat MUCH less during dinner.
2) Not indulge so much in foods that's loaded with sugar & salt (like those kuih we love so much).
So calorie wise, in a day, you're actually consuming more than you are when you are not fasting.
All those extra calories are FAT.
Another bad habit that we have is that we tend to do less during the fasting period.
It's like a green card to laziness.
(Admit it, I do.)
So here's the basic equation:
You+ More calorie intake - Less calorie burning activities= Bigger you.
I'm not saying don't fast (don't quote me out of context here), but there are right ways to do it.
- Eat dinner as you would if you weren't fasting. Yes, that means cut out all those unnecessary kuih and sugary drinks. Perhaps if you want to, add 1 sugary item just for a little treat.
- DON'T eat till you're too-full-to-move in one seating. Actually, drink first (Our bodies give out the same sensation when we are hungry and thirsty. So people usually confuse thirst with hunger.) Drink and chillax for a few minutes, then you can start eating.
- When eating, it's too tempting to gobble everything down in one seating. This is where copying the prophet's actions will also help with your waistline! Eat in stages. Have some rice and go do your prayers. When you're done, you'll be surprised to find yourself already full and won't eat as much.
- During sahur, try not to 'fill up your tank' in hopes that you won't feel hungry throughout the day. and later SLEEP. Your body will still convert food to to energy regardless of what you're doing and if it finds that you're not using the energy, it converts it into fat which is harder to break down..
Hope this answers your burning questions about the topic.
Remember, the key is not how MUCH you eat, but how much calories you're consuming.
Eat healthy & clean peeps!