Muslims warned about dangers of dehydration during Ramadan

Muslims at prayer
Muslims at prayer

Help is at hand for Muslims with health conditions who are fasting during the month of Ramadan.

As the weather gets even hotter, Bucks County Council has issued health advice for those preparing to observe the religious tradition.

Ramadan sees many members of the Muslim community fasting during daylight hours for 30 days starting on Sunday June 29.

It is common to have one meal just before sunrise and an evening meal after sunset during this time.

Council chiefs have warned that during fasting, the body continues to lose water in the usual way which is not being replaced by drinking - and this can lead to dehydration.

When Ramadan falls in summertime, the days are that much longer and the weather warmer, and the danger of dehydration is greater.

Dehydration will make a person feel unwell, disorientated or confused, and can lead to fainting or collapse.

If someone is suffering these symptoms, they should stop fasting and have a drink of water or other fluid.

The Muslim Council of Britain has confirmed that breaking the fast in such circumstances is allowable under Islamic law.

There is also a warning to anyone fasting that they should drink sufficiently before the fast begins.

Individuals who are less fit and healthy are at greater risk of dehydration – this includes older people and those with poorly-controlled medical conditions such as low or high blood pressure or diabetes and those who are receiving dialysis treatment - these individuals, their families and their communities need to be extra vigilant.

Bucks director of public health Jane O’Grady said: “When Ramadan falls in the summer months it’s really important to take extra care to drink enough before the fast to keep your fluid levels up during the day and avoid dehydration.

“Do watch out for more vulnerable members of the community, especially if the weather is very warm, to make sure that they stay healthy during the holy month.”