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HEALTH

Foods That the Prophet Liked and Our Health By M. Shamsur Rabb Khan From doctors to common men, health has become a genuine concern in this world where commodities are considered impure, air polluted and water contaminated. We have health experts and dieticians proferring advice. But very few of us do give a second thought about how the Prophet of Islam (saws) lived his life and what he asked his followers to follow. By M. Shamsur Rabb Khan

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n a Hadith, Prophet Mohammad (saws) stated: “There are two blessings in which most people are in great loss in two things: good health and free time.” Think of a seriously ill person or a perennial sick man. He can better tell us the importance of good health. Think of free time and those who avail it. However, those who enjoy a healthy life hardly feel grateful to Allah, and those who suffer from ailments seek a divine blessing to get cured. The question is: how do we take care of our health and how do we

Dates

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use our free time? A mere toothache or headache derails our thought process. Though modern day humans are over conscious about their health, they pay the least attention to what they should eat and what not.

a supreme model till the end of this word, lived his life and what he asked his followers to follow.

From doctors to common men, health has become a genuine concern in this world where commodities are considered impure, air polluted and water contaminated. We have health experts and dieticians proferring advice. But very few of us do give a second thought about how the Prophet of Islam, whose life is

Since much depends on the life style we adopt, the food habits we follow, which make a lot of difference to our health. Here I like to list the seven foods that the Prophet Mohammad (saws) ate, liked, preferred and asked others to eat. These simple foods that were the Prophet’s favourite foods are rich in several vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that have amazing healing properties.

Prophet Mohammad (saws) used to eat dates every morning. He soaked dates in water in the night and drank the water the next morning. He asked his companions (means the entire humanity) to eat dates. In a Hadith, the Prophet (saws)said, “As for a house that has no dates, truly those who live in it will go hungry.” Medically, dates are highly nutritious: a few dates can suffice as a complete

breakfast. Rich in sugars, iron, magnesium, potassium, calcium, phosphorous, vitamin A and B, and folic acid, dates supply almost all the nutrients that young or old need for a good health. Dates are also rich in fiber whereby it helps in preventing constipation and hemorrhoids, lowering blood cholesterol and protecting against colon cancer. Some amino acids, the building blocks of


HEALTH proteins, are also found in dates, as well as beneficial enzymes. Prophet Mohammad (saws) prescribed dates for pregnant women that help in easing labor process

during childbirth. Scientific studies have found that ripe dates contain a compound that resembles oxytocin, which is a natural hormone secreted by the body to encourage uterine

contractions at the time of delivery. How many of us do keep dates in our homes? Except for Ramadhan, a great majority of Muslims hardly take dates on normal days.

offer grapes to anyone present. The Bedouin was very pleased and left. One of the companions asked, “O Prophet of Allah (saws)! How come you ate all the grapes by yourself and did not offer to any one of us present? The Prophet (saws) smiled and said, “I ate all the grapes by myself because the grapes were sour. If I would have offered you, you might have made funny faces and that would have hurt the feelings of the Bedouin. I thought to myself that it’s better that I eat all of them cheerfully and please the Bedouin. I did not want to hurt the

feelings of that poor man”. The two famous Muslim physicians – Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim and Imam Dhahabi– observed that eating grapes and raisins boosts one’s memory. Grapes contain flavonoids, which are antioxidants that help bolster immunity and ward off diseases. Also, ellagic acid found in grapes has been shown to help prevent cancer and resveratrol found in red grapes has been proven to lower bad LDL cholesterol, increase good HDL cholesterol, and prevent clogging of the arteries thus lowering the risk for heart disease.

Grapes

Grapes were Prophet’s (saws) favourite. He loved eating grapes and raisins. One day a Bedouin brought a bunch of grapes to the Prophet (saws) as a gift, and he ate the whole bunch of grapes by himself. He did not

Figs Abu Dardaa(ra) narrated that Prophet Mohammad (saws) said, “If I could say that a fruit was sent down from Heaven (to earth), I would say it is figs, because the Heaven’s fruit has no stones. Eat it, as it cures hemorrhoids and it is useful for treating gout.” Once the Prophet (saws)was offered a plate of figs, and he ate from it and asked his companions to eat. Fig contains fibers, carbohydrates, monosaccarides, protein, salts of several minerals such as potassium, calcium,

magnesium, phosphorus, iron, copper, zinc, sulphur, sodium and chlorine. It also contains many vitamins, enzymes, acids, disinfectants, gelatinous matter

Pumpkin Pumpkin was one of the favorite foods of the Prophet Mohammad (saws). On several occasions, he expressed his fondness for pumpkin. Anas bin Malik (ra) reported that a person

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invited Allah’s Messenger (saws) to a meal. I also went along with him. He brought soup containing pumpkin. Allah’s ‘messenger (saws) ate that pumpkin with relish. Anas (ra) said: When I saw that I began

and a high percentage of water content. Figs are very useful in treating hemorrhoids, chronic constipation, gout and arthritis, inflammations of the respiratory tract, menstrual disturbances, convulsions, mouth ulcers, gum inflammations, tonsils and sore throat. It is also useful in the treatment of vitiligo, removing warts on the body and the healing of wounds and ulcers as it contains germicides, antibacterial and antiviral agents, and is also useful against tapeworm.


HEALTH to place it before him, and did not eat it (myself). Anas(ra) said: It was since then that pumpkin was always my favourite (food). Anas (ra) reported that “The Prophet used to like pumpkin. “He was

brought some food and invited to eat. I picked up the pumpkin in the plate and put it before him because I knew he liked it.” Pumpkins are rich in carotenoids, which have been linked to decreased risk of cancers

of the lung, colon, bladder, cervix, breast, and skin, and lower rates of heart disease, cataracts, and macular degeneration; with a notable increase in immunity and mental functioning.

The companions of Prophet Mohammad (saws) relate that he used to love milk. It is mentioned Abu Dawood and Al-Tirmidhi: “Let whoever is given milk (by Allah) say, ‘May the blessing of Allah be in it, and may He give us more of it’, for I know that there is no other food or drink that can take its place.” Milk is so nutritious and filling that some

dieticians today label it as a food, not a drink. It contains proteins, fats, sugars, calcium, phosphorus, zinc, and B vitamins. Children, adolescents, and pregnant and breastfeeding women need milk most, and it should be used in moderation by average adults. The Prophet (saws) taught his companions to avoid milk during a headache or fever.

Milk

Honey Honey is mentioned in the Holy Quran as a remedy and cure for diseases. Prophet Mohammad (saws)loved honey. However, our homes are almost devoid of this delicious and nutritious food. There are many health benefits of honey: it has anti-bacterial, antiinflammatory, and has anti-fungal effects. For good health, we need to follow the practice of the Prophet

(saws) by drinking a spoonful of honey dissolved in a cup of water every morning. This practice tones the kidneys, detoxifies the liver, eases pain and inflammation, treats hypertension, allergies, stomach ulcers, intestinal disorders, and sore throat, and soothes coughs. The Prophet (saws) has said, “You have two medicines: honey and the Quran”.

Olive oil Prophet Mohammad (saws) said, “Eat olive oil and use it as ointment as it comes from a blessed tree.” The Prophet (saws) and Umar ibn Al-Khattab(ra) were often seen eating bread with olive oil for dinner. From the medical point of view, olive oil is a good moisturizer for dry and chapped skin, it makes the hair shiny and softer, and it can ease stomach pain and muscle soreness, and of all the oils, olive oil is the healthiest. The monounsaturated oils found in olive oil have been linked to decreased heart disease

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as they reduce blood pressure and cholesterol. Studies indicate that regular consumption of olive oil boosts immunity and reduces the incidence of cancer. We need to change our dietary habits first: we can enjoy all these seven foods with a belief that we are following Sunnah.. This can lead to a double benefit—one of following the beloved Sunnah of Prophet (saws) and the second is the dietary advantage we can gain from these blessed fruits and vegetables and liquid staples.


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