The Meaning of Iftar

Iftar refers to the evening meal eaten after sunset during Swam in the Islamic month of Ramadan. People gather to break their day long fast at Iftar, which is one of religious rites of Ramadan held by the Muslim community. Since, Muslims observe a strict fast during the day; they are quite hungry by Iftar time held right after Maghrib (sunset). Traditionally, the fast is broken by consuming a date, as it is mentioned in Hadith literature that the Prophet broke his fast by eating some dates. If dates are not available, then the fast can be broken with a sip of water. Many Muslim sponsor Iftar as a form of charity because they believe it was practiced by Prophet Muhammad.

In regions with large Muslim population, a signal or cannon indicates time for breaking of the fast or the time may be broadcast over radio & TV as well. In Muslim tradition, all healthy people should practice fasting in the month of Ramadan, except for children who have not yet achieved puberty. A day in the month of Swam begins at daybreak with the ‘Suhur’, a very rich, high protein meal that will sustain the person’s energy level throughout the day. Given that, there will be no meal eaten until Iftar time at sunset, it is wise to eat some dates and drink water so that the body continues to work properly. During Ramadan, it is very important to supply the right form of energy source to the body to meet its daily needs.

Iftar usually starts by consuming a date and drinking water, a tradition followed by Muslim since ages. Religious texts say that Prophet Muhammad broke his fast with dates but deep down there is a scientific explanation for the move. After fasting for the entire day, the body’s need is an immediate energy source to help raise the blood sugar levels. Dates instantly replenish the low sugar levels plus they are good source of proteins, vitamins and minerals such as potassium and magnesium. After breaking their fast the traditional way, Muslims consume a rich variety of foods which people like to have with all family members and at Iftar parties arranged by mosques. Each country and culture pays an emphasis on serving different varieties of food with Iftar food specialties playing a major role. The base for all these dishes constitute of juices, lamb, soups & stews to replenish the body’s water and protein content.

Iftar in Dubai has a profound religious meaning with many social organizations arranging free Iftar to millions of needy people. If tourists arrange for best Dubai hotel deals, they can enjoy Iftar in the stylish elegance of 5-star surroundings. Many hotels in Dubai arrange for Iftar parties and entertainment events, which are open to Non-Muslims as well.

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