It’s advisable for everyone to drink more than the usual amount of water and to avoid salty foods.
By JUDY SIEGEL-ITZKOVICH
Anyone who drinks three cups of coffee, cola or other caffeine-laden drinks a day should have already reduced consumption before the fast to avoid withdrawal headaches on Yom Kippur.
Itâ€™s also advisable for everyone to drink more than the usual amount of water about 12 or 13 glasses during the 24 hours before the fast, which begins on Wednesday evening.
Dietitians recommend avoiding salty and fried foods as well.
The ideal menu for a noontime meal on the eve of the fast would be fish, consomme with noodles or soup nuts, a small portion of meat or chicken and a side dish of complex carbohydrates (such as pulses, pasta, potatoes, couscous, corn, rice, pulses and bread, preferably whole wheat). The recommended pre-fast meal includes complex carbohydrates, some protein, a bit of fatty food to promote satiety, a small salad or vegetable and cooked fruit, but nothing very sweet, which triggers thirst, or carbonated, which fills the stomach with gas. After the fast, one should drink something and then eat solids gradually, so as not to shock the digestive system. Forty-five minutes to an hour afterwards, one can eat a balanced meal with protein, carbohydrates, and vegetables.
Patients with chronic disorders such as heart disease, diabetes, ulcers and hypertension and those who take medications regularly should consult with their doctors before deciding whether to fast. Patients with high blood pressure who take diuretics should be especially careful to ask their doctors what to do, as these medications remove water from the body. Cancer patients who are currently undergoing therapy should not fast without approval from their physicians, as they need a lot of liquids to alleviate side effects of chemotherapy.