Navratri is a nine-day Hindu festival celebrated every year in September or October. The festival is celebrated in honour of the nine forms of the divine feminine principle or shakti.
One of the most important aspects of the Navratri festival is fasting and religious reflection. Fasting is considered a crucial part of the Navratri festival and is observed by many Hindus and has several benefits.
In this guide, you’ll learn about the different types of fasts during Navratri and how to do them in a healthy and fulfilling manner.
The Different Types of Fasts During Navratri
Navratri is a nine-night Hindu festival celebrated in honor of the divine feminine. During this time, many Hindus choose to fast as a way of paying tribute to the goddess and cleansing the body and mind. Different types of fasts are done during Navratri, and choosing what you are comfortable with is essential.
Partial Fast or Falhaari
The most common type of fast during Navratri is the partial fast. It means that you will still eat food but avoid certain foods considered impure or unclean. Those who adhere to eating food can eat food like:
Kuttu ka aata (buckwheat flour),
Sabudana or sago,
Singhare ka aata (water chestnut flour),
Bottle gourd (lauki),
Dry fruits and
All types of fruits.
Common foods to avoid during a partial fast or falhaari are wheat, rice, semolina, maida, corn flour, legumes and pulses, meat, eggs, alcohol, and cigarettes. You may also avoid foods that are difficult to digest, such as fried foods.
If you’re looking for a challenging fast, you may want to consider a complete fast. You won’t consume any food or water for the festival’s duration. It’s essential to make sure you’re well-prepared before undertaking it. It’s also important to listen to your body and stop fasting if you feel unwell.
Fasting can take various forms, with durations ranging from many hours to two or more days. During Navratri, some people fast from the start of the festival till Kanya puja, and others do it for a few days, but it is always done in pairs.
Some people eat one simple meal daily, and others fast on only fruits, milk, and dry fruits in addition to water. Many people, along with fasting, do deep meditation as a part of their praying rituals.
Regardless of the fast you choose or how you choose to do it, the important thing to remember is that the goal is to cleanse your body and mind and connect with the divine. Fasting is not about deprivation but about finding a sense of peace and calm within yourself.
Tips for a Healthy Fast
Here are a few tips that will help you fast in a healthy way during Navratri.
1. Drink Plenty of Fluids: When fasting, it is vital to keep your body hydrated. Make sure to drink plenty of water and other fluids, such as juices and coconut water. Avoid coffee, tea, and other caffeinated beverages, which can lead to dehydration.
2. Eat Healthily: fasting does not mean you have to starve yourself. Include fruits and vegetables in your diet. Avoid fried and processed foods, as they can be difficult to digest.
Fasting has many health benefits if done right. Eat dry fruits, prefer fruit chaat over fried potatoes, and indulge in sabudana ki khichdi and kheer instead of kuttu ke aate ki puri. Avoid tea or coffee and have milk, curd, and buttermilk instead. Also, avoid excess sugar and eat nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables. For first-timers, take it slow and don’t fast for long periods.
3. Avoid Excessive Sun Exposure: When fasting, your body is more susceptible to heat exhaustion and sunstroke. Avoid spending too much time in the sun. If stepping outside is unavoidable, carry an umbrella, a bottle of water and some dry fruits and fruits, wear loose, comfortable clothes, and apply sunscreen.
4. Get Enough Sleep: Your body needs more rest when fasting. Make sure to get plenty of sleep during Navratri.4. Get Enough Sleep: Your body needs more rest when fasting. Make sure to get plenty of sleep during Navratri.
Fasting can be a great way to detoxify the body and reset the digestive system. It’s also important to remember that fasting should be done healthily to reap its benefits. Remember these tips so you won’t have any problems fasting and have more time to enjoy the Navratri festivities.
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