The Qur'an and Hadith provide guidance on many ways through which

we can combat being overweight. They include periodic cleansings,

eating simple and whole foods and herbs, avoiding excess, drinking

plenty of water, praying and seeking guidance from Allah, seeking

the help of others, and being persistent and patient.

Ramadan is a time for physical cleansing as well as spiritual cleansing. A prophetic tradition (Hadith) states,

"Fast the month of Ramadan so to heal your bodies from disease."

If we strive to eat only pure, simple and light foods during Ramadan, we can undergo a physical as well as a spiritual cleansing.

Since there is such a strong scientifically proven correlation between our spiritual, mental and physical health, to purify all systems at the same time provides the ultimate and most powerful detoxification fast that we have available today.

Eating breakfast is also an important part of weight loss as it speeds metabolism of the body.

The Hadith says, "Eat your meal at dawn, for there is blessing in the meal at dawn,"

and, "There is blessing in three things: the early morning meal, bread and soup."

To eat purely means to eat the whole, unprocessed and pure foods

that Allah has provided us such as whole wheat breads, grains, beans, vegetables and fresh fruits.

These are perfect foods and we do not need to improve them with colors, chemicals and preservatives.

The Qur'an (5:4) says, "They ask thee what is lawful to them as food. Say, 'Lawful unto you are all things good and pure.'"

And (50:7), "And the earth we have spread out, and we have set firm mountains on it, and have made every kind of beautiful growth to grow on it."

Another gift that Allah has given us in the battle against excess weight is water.

The Qur'an says (15:45), "The righteous will be amid gardens and fountains of clear-flowing water,"

and (21:30), "We made water essential for all life."

Muslims wanting to lose weight would benefit by drinking ten glasses of water a day, at least one half hour before and after meals.

The five prescribed daily prayers also provide physical toning benefits to the body.

And patience is often the greatest test we face when we decide to lose weight.

However, the Qur'an says (2:155), "Give glad tidings to those who exercise patience when struck with adversity and say, 'Indeed, we belong to God, and to Him is our return.'

Such ones receive blessings and mercy from their Lord, and such are the guided ones."

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