Fasting is normally associated with the holy month of Ramadan in which billions of muslim around the world abstain from eating and drinking from dawn till dusk. The fast is intended to bring the faithful closer to Allah and remind them of those less fortunate.
The term intermittent fasting is the type of diet getting popular these days in order to lose weight. Intermittent fasting advocates suggest it not as a diet plan , but an eating pattern. It does not include any rules about what foods to eat, but rather when to eat . It revolves around the periods of fasting and non fasting days.


Different dieticians suggest different fasting plans for weight loss. The most popular among them are ;

  1. Fasting for 16 hours each day and restricting daily eating time to 8 hours . It includes 8 hrs of sleeping time also.
  2. The 5:2 diet is the most common type of intermittent fasting often accompanied by keto diet. It involves eating low carbohydrates high fat meals for 5 days and then two fast days in which the recommended caloric intake for women is 500 kcal in a day and for men is 600 kcal.
  3. Alternative day fasting means eating every other day . On fasting days many dieticians suggest only liquid diet or taking very low calorie diet in which only 500 calories are allowed in a day.
  4. The worrier diet which comprise of one big meal at night and fast all day eating nothing or small amount of low calorie fruits and vegetables throughout a day.
  5. Skipping 1 or 2 meals daily when you are not hungry or don't want to cook.
  6. 24 hours fast diet , two times a week in which only fluid is allowed but no solid foods.


Potential benefits of intermittent fasting

  • During fasting state, when the individual not eat for many hours, the body breakdown glycogen reserves for energy in order to work normally. Once the glycogen reserves have been used up , the body starts using fat deposits for energy which in turns may initially results in weight loss. Due to fat loss many toxins stored in a body fat are also removed from the body resulting in Detoxification.
  • Fasting for many hours helps in regeneration of nerve cells. During starvation, the body works to save energy, and for it the only thing is to recycle the immune cells that are not needed, especially those that are damaged.
  • Fasting also helps to maintain the normal levels of insulin and lipids in blood.

Risks associated with intermittent fasting

  • Over 50% of the rapid weight reduction is fluid, which may results in Serious hypotension problems.
  • Excessive Tiredness and Sleeping disorders as a result of starvation may cause headache and nervousness? Food deprivation or fasting for many hours may end up in eating more than usual and binging.
  • Muscle loss may occur as a result of proteins deprivation from food which can lead to organ failure. That is why individuals with prolong fasting are more prone to cardiac , kidney and liver disorders.
  • Micronutrient deficiency can lead to serious health problems due to prolonged starvation
  • Wrong choices of food particularly when intermittent fasting is accompanied with keto diet in alternative days may lead to inflammation and ulcers and normally end up with weight gain rather than weight loss.
  • Accumulation of uric acid can contribute to the episodes of gout or Gallstones.
  • Frequent episodes of hypoglycemia can occur in some individuals who are either diabetic or have problems with blood- sugar regulations.

. By Aliya Waqas


Many people tend to avoid nuts because of the amount of calories and fats present in them, but in fact nuts are extremely nourishing . A handful of nuts provide you with fibre, proteins, mono-unsaturated fatty acids and essential vitamins and minerals.

A healthy daily intake of nuts is 30g (a small handful) or approximately: 20 almonds. 15 cashews or 20 peanuts.

Importance of nuts in diet

It is essential to add nuts in your daily diet program because of the following reasons;

  • Nuts and seeds are rich in energy and nutrients. Nuts nutrition broadly comprises of heart friendly monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA). These MUFA help lower LDL or “bad cholesterol” and increase HDL or “good cholesterol” in the blood.

  • All the nuts are good source of omega 3 fatty acids . The inflammatory action of omega 3 help to lower the risk of blood pressure, coronary artery disease, strokes and cancers. Omega-3 fatty acids also offer benefits in conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and Schizophrenia, depression and Alzheimer’s disease

  • Nuts provide you with ample amount of vitamin E and B-complex vitamins. Vitamin-E is essential for maintaining the integrity of cell membrane of mucosa and skin; thus, protecting it from harmful oxygen-free radicals. B-6 vitamins are essential for optimum health and well-being.

  • in addition to calories, and vitamins, they are a rich source of minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, fluoride and selenium.

Nutritional comparison of different nuts


1 portion or 1 oz of almonds provide 163 kcal. They are rich source of calcium almost 75 mg in 1 oz which is an important bone building mineral. Almonds contain riboflavin and L-carnitine, the two nutrients which positively affect neurological activity and prevent cognitive decline and help increase memory. Packed with essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin E, zinc, calcium, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids, almonds can do a world of good when it comes to your health. But in order to absorb all those nutrients, the almonds you eat, should be soaked in water overnight. This is because their brown, rough skin contains a certain enzyme inhibitor that is meant to protect the seed until it has the perfect conditions for germination. Our body cannot breakdown this enzyme-inhabiting compound thus making the digestion of almonds difficult and also restricting your body from absorbing its nutrients. Apart from that, soaking almonds also softens the seed, making it easy to chew and digest.


A portion of walnuts provide 185 calories . They are rich source of omega 3 and mono unsaturated fatty acid which help to lower the ldl cholesterol levels in blood . Among the many minerals found in walnuts one is zinc, which is a co-factor in many enzymatic functions particularly for the regulation of growth and development of many body cells.

Cashew nuts

Cashew nuts or kaju are high calorie nuts also rich in oleic, and palmitoleic acids , a heart friendly mono-unsaturated fatty acid.Cashew nuts contain a type of flavonols which is able to stop development of cancer by preventing and fighting against the division of cancerous cells. Like many other nuts cashew nuts are rich in vitamins and minerals and may help prevent deficiency diseases.

Pistachio nuts

Pistachio are rich in vitamin A and E. help your body fight against inflammation and at the same time protect your blood vessels and prevent hear diseases. They are rich in vitamin b6 which makes pistachios good for the nervous system and for the stimulation of brain activity.


Peanuts are one of the best sources of folic acid which reduces the risk of the development of neural tube defects in newly born babies. Folic acid helps form genetic materials in your body cells thus enabling the proper formation of red blood cells. Peanuts are believed to lower the risk of type II diabetes that keep the blood sugar levels stable because of the mineral magnesium found in them. This helps in the metabolism of fat and carbohydrates and in calcium absorption.

How to incorporate nuts in your daily diet

Only 30 grams of nuts are recommended to add in your daily diet. More nuts may create digestive problems , obesity or other allergic reaction.

  • Nuts can be taken as a snack but it is not advisable as nuts are extremely addictive and it can lead to overeating.

  • Add nuts to to your breakfast cereals.

  • Almonds and walnuts can give extra flavour to your savoury and desserts.

  • Add nuts in your baking .

  • Nut butter is a healthy substitute and can be used as a spread.


Nuts are extremely nutritious and must be included in your diet in order to gain maximum health benefits.


Type 2 diabetes is the metabolic disorder usually occurring in persons older than 30 years of age. It is the condition in which pancreas fails to produce enough insulin required to maintain normal glucose level in blood.

Risk factors for type 2 diabetes:

  1. Older age
  2. Obesity
  3. Family history for diabetes
  4. Physical inactivity
  5. A prior history of gestational diabetes
  6. Hypertension

symptoms of type 2 diabetes:

  • Hyperglycaemia
  • Excessive thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Weight loss
  • Hypertension

Dietary therapy in type 2 Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease that requires changes for lifetime. Besides medications diet therapy is also important to achieve normal blood glucose and lipid levels. Caloric restriction and moderate weight loss have been shown to improve diabetes control. People with diabetes should eat the diet rich in fibre , low in saturated fats, and include variety of fruits and vegetables.

Tips for healthy diet in diabetes

  1. Eat regular meals.
  2. Make healthy food choices, for eg, wholegrain cereals and grains instead of white rice and refined flour. vegetables with high water and fibre content grown above the ground like karela, okra instead of the roots like potatoes
  3. Avoid excessive fats and oils
  4. Enjoy variety of fruits and vegetables approximately 5 a day.
  5. Fish is good source of omega3 which is good for heart and is a low fat protein. Try taking fish proteins instead of red meat.
  6. Try to avoid sugar rich foods and desserts as far as possible. Only use them occasionally.
  7. Try to increase your physical activities. Walk for at least 30 mins in a day.
  8. Drink plenty of water.