Rasulullah has mentioned that there are two favours which most people take lightly; Good health and free time. Looking after our health is an essential part of a Muslim’s life. If we are not careful regarding this important aspect of our lives, then we may be deprived of many important a`maal (May Allah Ta’ala protect us all). We maybe unable to perform Salaah with Jama’ah, go out in the Path of Allah, make jihad and help the poor and needy if we do not preserve good health.
In another Hadith, Rasulullah (sallallahualaihi wasallam) has mentioned, “A strong Muslim is better and more beloved to Allah Ta’ala than a weak Muslim.”
We have been repeatedly taught in the Ahaadith to make dua for good health and seek Allah Ta’ala’s protection from all dreadful diseases. One such dua is as follows, “O Allah! Keep my hearing well, keep my sight well and keep my body well.”
Make shukar and thank Allah Ta’ala for the good health that we enjoy and in turn Allah Ta’ala will increase us in good health.
Health and sickness are both from Allah Ta’ala alone. However, we have been commanded in the Qur’aan to take precautions. If we adhere to the following 7 points, Insha Allah, we will enjoy good health throughout our lives.
- Clean Air • Make a point of breathing in fresh clean air. • After Fajar, take a walk and breathe in deeply from your nose allowing the fresh morning air to filter through your lungs. Exhale from your mouth. • Hadhrat Moulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Saahib (daamat barakaatuhum) has mentioned, “Subah ki hawa, Laakho ki dawa” (The fresh morning air is a medicine for hundreds of thousands of ailments). • Allow fresh air and sunlight into the home daily and ensure that it is free from dampness and diseases. • Hadhrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thaanwi (rahmatullahi alaih) used to say that if a person takes a walk after the Fajar Salaah with the intention of enjoying good health, then he will Insha Allah receive the same reward as the one who sat in the musjid upto the Ishraaq Salaah. • Refrain totally from smoking or sitting near those who smoke.
- Clean Water • Drink clean fresh water. If possible, drink rain water or borehole water (provided it is tested and declared safe to drink). If this is not available, install a water purifying unit in your home whereby you can obtain filtered water instead of the water directly from the tap. Do ensure that you use a good quality filter. • Drink 8 glasses (+ 2 litres) of water per day. • Avoid drinking water ½ hour before and after meals. • Try and avoid drinking very cold or iced water.
- Exercise • Most of us are unmindful of this. One should exercise at least 3 times a week for 20-30 minutes. • People with busy schedules may suffice with at least 15 press-ups and 20 sit-ups at the beginning of the day. • At the least, a brisk walk every second day for approximately 20 minutes will do you much good. Those men who live within walking distance from the Musjid should make it a habit to walk to the Musjid for their five times Salaah. (NB. Women should not go out walking on the street. Rather they should walk in their homes or in their yards).
- Balanced diet • Eat two meals a day instead of three. Supper should be a light meal. • Refrain from eating processed foods (polonies, sausages, patties, foods with artificial colouring and preservatives, etc.). • Avoid eating too much of oily foods or food fried in oil. • Avoid eating between meals. • Don’t overeat. We learn from the Hadith of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) to reserve one third of the stomach for food, one third for water and one third for air. • Cook simple meals. Avoid cooking too many varieties for one meal. The Hakims are of the opinion that eating various different types of food in one meal is not conducive to good health.
- Sleep • Hadhrat Moulana In’aamul Hasan Saahib (RA) had advised that every person should get 6 hours of sound sleep daily. • One cannot function efficiently without having sufficient sleep. • Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has encouraged us to have an afternoon nap. (+ 45 minutes). This sleep in medical terms is referred to as a power sleep. Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has said that having an afternoon nap will assist one in waking up for the Tahajjud Salaah.
- Control of emotions • Rasulullah Salallahu alayhi wasallam has, on several occasions, cautioned the ummat about controlling their emotions. There are many Ahaadith of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) wherein there are severe warnings for those who do not control their anger as well as those who harbour jealousy, hatred and rancour in their hearts for others. This eventually builds into stress within us. • Stress has become very common. Due to our hectic lifestyles, the long hours that we work, we begin to stress and those around us suffer the consequences. • People who cannot manage their stress levels adequately are prone to cardiovascular high blood pressure, diabetes and other illnesses.
- Elimination of toxins (Detox) • Due to our unhealthy diet, we have a build up of toxins in our bodies. These toxins need to be eliminated from time to time. Toxin build-up in the colon is the beginning of many illnesses. • In order to eliminate these toxins, one should take 2 Tablespoons of Castor oil in half a glass of orange juice every two or three months