I need scientific-based evidence Not Dogmatic one
Is there any health benefits for Ramadan fasting ?
And if so does this benefits Outweigh the risks of this type of fasting I read a Research paper which mention some health setback related to Ramadan fasting
Do you have any scientific-based evidence support Ramadan fasting
Side note : I was Muslim, but now an Atheist

  • although i answered you question, i would like to add that you are asking a question, wanting a science based answer. yet you still come to an islamic site, to ask muslims this question and insult our religion on top of that? doesnt make sense to me. If you werent happy with being a muslim there is no need to insult others for it.
    – Tash C
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 6:17
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    @TashannaChamma His question seems totally respectful, not sure where you got that insult part.
    – user12537
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 6:46
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    @TashannaChamma could you tell me please where and how I insult your religion or is that asking for the evidence is considered an insult in your religion ? Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 9:38
  • @user3779823 i'm sorry if i sounded rude, but i took offense at the word dogmatic, assuming you were directing it at islam. i apologise if i said something wrong
    – Tash C
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 13:27
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    my dear nameless friend, you will probably get an accurate answer (if fasting is a boon or bane) if you exactly post your or your friend's medical condition and then ask it in health.stackexchange.com. Apart from God's mercy, as I said, it depends on your health condition if fasting is a 'miracle' to you or not. Rest, assured, one single answer cannot present all the pros and cons of fasting applying to different (thousands of) medical conditions and patients with various diseases. Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 19:32

5 Answers 5


Science is never perfect, so is research. One group can do a search to prove something good, for another group that proves the total opposite. There are too many variables that go into play including who you do the research on, etc.

There was a research that was done that showed a significant decrease of serum triglyceride concentration in a group of 32 volunteers in Morocco:

Paper: https://www.karger.com/Article/Abstract/177999

Personally, I think that fasting (and I am speaking from experience) is not healthy as most Muslims binge eat when breaking their fast with very fatty and unhealthy foods around the world. Yes there are some who actually eat healthy when they break their fast are getting some health benefits like weight loss depending on their calorie intake.

Muslims fast because they were ordered to and to feel the pain/hunger of the poor (even if it is for a few hours a day). We do not expect any health benefits nor did the Prophet PBUH or his followers (it was never mentioned as a healthy deed).

There was a hadith saying صومو تصحو meaning fast to be healthy however, it was judged weak (منكر Munkar on some narrations) by many scholars:


  • As a conclusion : There is no health benefits caused by Muslim fasting it's a matter of 'feel the pain/hunger of the poor' Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 9:44
  • It depends, there can't be a hard and fast rule to say if it is helpful to you or not. But in general, as fasting is applicable to 'only' healthy (who can fast they may be diabetic, obese etc) people, maybe they can improve their health conditions in various ways like asTashanna said, detoxifying is a very famous thing. Rest, it is like caring and helping the already unhealthy or in other words poor people. @user3779823 Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 19:35
  • @AmericanMuslim What about mentally? its meant to strengthen your will power too. Yes people pig out after their fast, but this is wrong. If we fasted the way were supposed to, the way the prophet PBUH fasted, we will benefit a whole lot more from it.
    – Tash C
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 4:14

As someone interested in burning fat more efficiently for running I can tell you there is no answer to this question scientifically. Scientifically, its clear that you must be able to burn more than just carbohydrates to make it through the day. Many runners think that a key to running long distance is to train your body to burn fat more efficiently. Fasting MIGHT help do this. Science cant even tell a person how to run faster or eat healthier from a theoretical view, but statistics can help. Ketosis is mentioned as the sweet smell on a fasting persons breath somewhere in hadith or the quran. Other than that I agree with Tashanna that fasting can be counter productive just like exercise can be counter productive since this demands eating more in a meal without over eating altogether (to obey the calorie in to calorie out rule). It would be nice to see this research paper you mention for my own information (not to make any counter points). Peace.

  • I am talking about the Muslim fast during the Islamic month "Ramadan" during this fast they refrain from eating and drinking this mean that the body does not get the appropriate amount of water,Regarding the scientific paper which I mention : link Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 19:00
  • @user3779823 Thanks, you should add the link to your question. As a former muslim then you know that continuing the fast on Eid is prescribed against. I think there is more to that idea not to fast too much but I never worried about fasting too much because I am more or less addicted to soda and cookies :)
    – user13203
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 20:11
  • @user3779823 The paper is not so decisive. Science is normally like that right? Not exactly pro or con and highlighting the complications and issues at hand. This is a good subject considering the heat wave in India and the fact that most drugs rely on being hydrated and well fed per the paper you reference.
    – user13203
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 20:15
  • Yes you are right the paper is not decisive regarding the risks of Muslim fasting because this risk is relative to each person and his physical state, But at least it's disprove the 'miracles' and those Extraordinary claims about the magical benefits on health that caused by Muslim fasting Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 21:52
  • @user3779823 Doing it for "health" perhaps is just another trail to pass by remembering its for God and doing it for God versus your self.
    – user13203
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 1:55

Yes, there are plenty of 'real' health benefits from fasting, and those are the ones that help increase our faith as Muslim.

Apart from that (and to answer what you meant by your question), there are many health benefits. According to a blog post on lifehack.org, this includes:

  • weight loss
  • improved insulin sensitivity (which means you control your cravings for carbohydrates)
  • helps speed up your metabolism as it gives your system a break
  • improves your brain function
  • helps boost your immune system
  • helps clear the skin.

And according to allaboutfasting.com, fasting will also :

  • rest the digestive system
  • allow for cleansing and detoxification of the body
  • create a break in eating patterns, while shining a spotlight on them
  • promote greater mental clarity
  • cleanse and heal "stuck" emotional patterns
  • lead to a feeling of physical lightness, increasing energy level
  • promote an inner stillness, enhancing spiritual connection
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    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, do you have scientific paper, scientific research , Any thing which can support your claims ' weight loss, insulin sensitivity,speed up your metabolism,improves your brain function,boost your immune system,clear the skin' especially the last one ! Clear the skin ?? Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 9:47
  • @user3779823 i didnt want to make my answer too long, thats why i put the links up there, but to be honest this question is the sort which you can get the answer from your own research, especially as its not really islamic based.
    – Tash C
    Commented Jun 29, 2015 at 4:11

I'm Muslim and I agree fasting is detrimental to health. Apart from the fact that we are supposed to know the pain and suffering of others, I see no other valid argument to be fasting. I find it ridiculous that some people have to fast up to 18 hours while others only fast 13 hours, 15 hours. Very very skeptical. In the event that you also suffer from a chronic illness such as polycystic ovaries or diabetes...and work with numbers and important files, can't afford to lose focus, fasting in Ramadan is very very detrimental to productivity. I'd like to see evidence for its benefits, but I'm afraid what I feel during a fast indicates the opposite. Experience versus fictional claims....


Being within a Muslim family, I have researched and experimented with fasting and can vouchsafe for the positive aspects to a great extent.

Fasting in general is very good for you. This is already scientifically proven.

Alternate day fasting and the 16-hour fast-- both of these types of fasts proved that mice would live longer when they were forced to fast for greater than 16-hour periods!

According to my own personal and others' "non-scientific" research, the health benefits increase the longer one fasts. For extremes: think of every saint and prophet's extended fast, google HRM sungazing, also see the

Ramadan fasting, as I've noted is like a nightowl version of this!

This is why in some Muslim countries everyone sleeps during the day and stays awake during the night, conducting business, etc.

For them, this ritualized fasting has become very comfortable for them.

For the Westerner Muslims, it is not so comfortable because the fasting period is during the work period!

I recommend you google the things I mentioned above and since you are an Athesit now you can non-religiously start practicing one very good religious practice (there are many more).

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    The references please ? Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 19:16
  • Google the term in bold.. And that is where the breadcrumbs begin :)
    – Ahmed
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 21:21
  • There's too much evidence out there. Here is one that just popped on my news feed today. collective-evolution.com/2015/02/05/…
    – Ahmed
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 23:16
  • I will repeat one caveat: the faster should drink water and not be doing too much activity during the fast. I repeat once again that for the Westerner, the Ramadan style fasting can be substituted with the type of fasting in the above link.
    – Ahmed
    Commented Jun 28, 2015 at 23:18

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