# What are the proper dietary and eating habits or manners in Islam?

1. What are the manners of eating and drinking in Islam?
2. What were the eating manners and habits of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)?
3. What are the benefits for us to adopt eating habits/manners of Islam?

Thanks.

EDIT:

Manners of Eating and Drinking in Islam and its advantages:

The Holy Prophet (saww) said:

“Eat when you feel hungry, drink when you feel thirsty ... " (1)

He (saww) also said:

“Whoever eats little, will have a sound body and a pure heart, and whoever eats too much will get sick and will become hardhearted.” (2)

“Avoid overeating which ruins the body, causes ailment and prevents one from worshiping.” (3)

Imam Sadiq (as) reported as saying:

“A believer eats in one gut, whereas a disbeliever eats in seven guts!” (4)

Prophet Jesus (as) has been reported as saying to the Israelites:

“O children of Israel! Do not overeat, for whoever overeats will sleep much, and whoever sleeps much will not perform his prayer properly, and whoever does not perform his prayer properly will be among the unmindful.” (5)

(1). Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 59, p.261

(2). Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 63, p.338

(3). Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 59, p.266

(4). Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 63, p.325

(5). Abwab al-Jinan (the doors to paradises).

This book is a gem. Piety and Health are discussed in this topic.

Sources with references are mentioned in the book.

Hope you find it useful. :)

I suggest you refer to this book for the manner of eating in Islam and much more practical tips in your life. It is compiled by the late grand contemporary Islamic philosopher and Quran commentator.

Also for the other part of your question that why we should follow these rules: It is because the Prophet is the best example for the Muslims to follow as indicated in Quran. These manners result in a healthy life. In particular one should pay much attention to adopt the right manners in eating to make the body fulfill its potentials for acquiring the spirituality which is a must for everybody. Ultimately according to Quran everybody is created to worship God, but in order to do that you need a healthy body in this world.

Some Quranic verses:

Quran has ordered us to notice to what we eat "Then let man look at his food" [80:24]. And that "Say: "Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds" [6:162] and the Needless that is God the prophet's life style was good for himself, and so would be good for us as well if we follow him!

• +1, I've read the book, that's just fantastic! Also I suggest the books with titles like The Prophet's or his Ahlol-Beyt Medicine, in which quite many good foods and treatments are introduced for different situations. Also note that Quran has ordered us to notice to what we eat "Then let man look at his food" [80:24]. And that "Say: "Truly, my prayer and my service of sacrifice, my life and my death, are (all) for Allah, the Cherisher of the Worlds" [6:162] and the Needless that is God the prophet's life style was good for himself, and so would be good for us as well if we follow him! – owari Oct 10 '12 at 20:36
• @owari, with your permission I put the Quranic verses in the answer. – rowman Oct 10 '12 at 20:44
• For example according to Shia Ahadith, it is encouraged to drink during the days while standing up toward Qiblah, and during the nights while sitting toward Qiblah, to sip water instead of gulping it, to drink a glass of water in three breath. Glasses are better to be used as the material for the water's container, but right hand is also ok if it is clean, and other containers can also be ok but perhaps preferred next. To say Bismellah before drinking not to become as deceased camels' drinking cited in Quran [56:55], and Alhamdulellah after that. And many other Sunnah you can find in the books – owari Oct 10 '12 at 20:48
• That's God's saying, no permission required from my side, brother :) – owari Oct 10 '12 at 20:49

“O’ Believers! Eat of the good and pure (lawful) that We have provided you with and be grateful to Allah, if you truly worship Him.” (2:172)

“And eat and drink, but waste not in extravagance, certainly He (Allah) likes not those who waste in extravagance.” (7:31)

He has forbidden you only what dies of itself, and blood, and the flesh of swine, and that over which any other (name) than (that of) Allah has been invoked. Then whoever is driven by necessity, not desiring, nor exceeding the limit, no sin is upon him. Surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (2:173)

Islam teaches us many etiquette’s of eating and drinking. The Prophet(PBUH) made a point of developing remarkably clean and healthy eating habits among his followers. He asked the companions to wash their hands before and after, to start eating with the praise of Allah, to eat using the right hand, not to eat until they really felt hungry, not to eat and drink excessively. Finally, by praising and thanking Allah for the food and drink, for making it easy to swallow and for producing an exit for it.

Eating, like any other act of a Muslim, is a matter of worship when performed according to the Islamic guidelines. The following are SOME of the many food habits that had been practiced and performed by the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him):

• Never Criticize Any Food

Food should not be criticized for any reason, despite personal disliking. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) never criticized any food that was offered to him.

“The Prophet (PBUH) never criticized any food (he was invited to) but he used to eat it if he liked the food, and leave it if he disliked
it.” Sahih Bukhari

• Supplication Before Each Meal

Since eating, like any other act of a Muslim, is a matter of worship, it begins with the name of Allah.

Muslims are to start their eating by making the following supplication:

“O Allah! Bless the food You have bestowed upon us and protect us
from the torment of hell. In the name of Allah we start.” (OR AT
LEAST SAY..Bismillah) - An-Nasa’i

• Supplication After Each Meal

After completing the meal, Muslims praise and thank Allah for the blessing that He bestowed upon them. After finishing their meal, Muslims say the following supplication:

“Praise be to Allah the One Who gave us the food and the drinks.
Praise be to Him Who made us Muslims.” (OR AT LEAST
SAY..Al-Humdullilah)

• Tirmidhi & Abu Dawud
• Eating Less

One of the main principles of good health is a balanced diet. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) emphasized the habit of eating less as a method of preventing sickness and disease. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said:

“Nothing is worse than a person who fills his stomach. It should be
enough for the son of Adam to have a few bites to satisfy his hunger. If he wishes more, it should be: One-third for his food, one-third
for his liquids, and one-third for his breath.”

• Tirmidhi & Ibn Majah
• Eating Slowly

Eating slowly is recommended for health. Slow eating reduces the consumption of food, as it postpones much of the meal to a time when the absorption of nutrients begin to produce physiological signals of satiety.

Slow eating helps in chewing the food well. This results in the exercise of the jaws and mixing of the saliva with food. Hence, efficient digestion takes place because the food particles are cut into smaller pieces, not requiring as much churning in the stomach or intestine.(less Heartburn)

• Moderation

The religion of Islam laid down the basis of dietary regulations as well as the limits within which Islam teaches man to enjoy the pleasures of life, including food, in a moderate way, not becoming a slave to his desires and not losing sight of his ultimate spiritual goal.

A Muslim is advised to avoid extremes and to choose a moderate course in all his affairs, including his eating habits.

“O children of Adam! Wear your beautiful apparel at every time and
place of prayer; eat and drink, but waste not by excess. For Allah
loves not the wasters.”

• Al- Qur’an, 7:31
• Sharing

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), demonstrated to his followers the pleasures of sharing as opposed to over-indulgence in the good things of life. The sharing of food with neighbors, relatives, friends, the needy, and the destitute is emphasized. Ibn Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that he heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying:

“He is not a believer who eats to his fill but his neighbor goes
without food.” Sahih Bukhari Prophet Muhammad elaborated on the duty of the Muslim to suppress greed, especially in eating. This appears in a very specific situation reported by Ibn Umar, in which the Prophet (PBUH) prohibited anyone taking two dates together before asking permission from his companions (Sahih Bukhari).

• Eating Together

Eating with others bring about harmony and understanding among people. People are usually more relaxed when eating in company, this is one reason why families should always try to eat Together, not to mention this is the Sunnah of our Beloved Prophet (PBUH) Your mind is less absorbed in your daily activities and are free of worries. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) brought the attention of Muslims to the importance of eating together (Note: ‘Eating together’ here does not imply mixed eating by males and females at parties or banquets):

“Eat together and not separately, for the blessing is associated with the company.”

• Ibn Majah

It was also reported that he said, “I do not eat reclining.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 5083.

He used to eat using the first three fingers (of his right hand), which is the best way of eating.

The Prophet’s guidance regarding diet:

The Prophet (PBUH) used to know what he was eating. He used to eat what was good for him.

He used to eat enough to keep him going, but no so much as to make him fat. Ibn ‘Umar narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) said:

“The believer eats in one stomach whilst the kaafir eats in seven.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari (5081) and Muslim (2060).

He taught his ummah something to protect them from diseases caused by eating and drinking. He said:

“The son of Adam does not fill any vessel worse than his stomach. It is sufficient for the son of Adam to eat a few mouthfuls, to keep him going. If he must do that (fill his stomach), then let him fill one third with food, one third with drink and one third with air.” Narrated by al-Tirmidhi (1381), Ibn Maajah (3349); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah (2265).

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## And Allah knows best.

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From all that has been mentioned, the importance of healthy eating, a balanced diet and hygiene can be understood in the light of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Islam has stressed on the importance of these things right from the start unlike health authorities etc., which have just recently begun to stress its importance. This could be counted as just another gem that manifests the perfection of Islam.

Source 1: Eating Habits/Sunnah of the Beloved Prophet sallalahu alihiwasallam

Source 2: Diet In Islam

The Prophet {peace be Upon Him used to drink while standing or sitting, but drinking while sitting remains the best out of the two. Riyaddusaliheen

It is Haram to eat with the left hand, Shama'il Muhammadiyah, The Prophet {peace be Upon}lean while eating Shama'il, and He {peace be Upon Him} used to eat with three fingers and used to lick them three times after he finished eating, Shama'il.

It is also ok to eat while walking, Riyaddusaliheen. The Muslim is satisfied with little food, he does not need to eat a lot, the Prophet {Peace be Upon Him} said:

Narrated Ibn `Umar: Allah's Apostle said, "A believer eats in one intestine (is satisfied with a little food), and a kafir (unbeliever) or a hypocrite eats in seven intestines (eats too much).

حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ سَلاَمٍ، أَخْبَرَنَا عَبْدَةُ، عَنْ عُبَيْدِ اللَّهِ، عَنْ نَافِعٍ، عَنِ ابْنِ عُمَرَ ـ رضى الله عنهما ـ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ "‏ إِنَّ الْمُؤْمِنَ يَأْكُلُ فِي مِعًى وَاحِدٍ، وَإِنَّ الْكَافِرَ ـ أَوِ الْمُنَافِقَ فَلاَ أَدْرِي أَيَّهُمَا قَالَ عُبَيْدُ اللَّهِ ـ يَأْكُلُ فِي سَبْعَةِ أَمْعَاءٍ ‏"‏‏.‏

Bukari