The doctor gave advice on preparing for Lent

In 2023, the beginning of the Great Orthodox Lent falls on February 27. However, those who plan to fast should be aware of the dangers of such drastic dietary restrictions. On Friday, February 24, INVITRO therapist Ivan Romasov told Izvestia how to prepare for the fast and exit from it.

“Dietary restrictions during fasting are, first of all, the exclusion of food of animal origin: meat, poultry, offal, animal fats, dairy products, eggs. Fish can be eaten on certain days, and there is no consensus on seafood, but there is no clear ban on their use. Plus, during the fast there are days of raw food and fasting,” he said.

As the doctor noted, the human body gets used to the same type of food, and any deviations from it become stressful for the gastrointestinal tract.

“If you are serious about fasting, you should have heard about the preparation, as this tradition is laid down in the Orthodox canon. There are three preparatory weeks ahead of Great Lent, the last of which is Maslenitsa (cheese). During this week, it is still allowed to eat milk, eggs, cheese, cottage cheese and fish, but meat is no longer allowed, ”Romasov said.

For those who plan to fast, the specialist recommended that they first consult a doctor for advice to find out if there are diseases that may be a contraindication to dietary restrictions.

The doctor also told what foods will help the body get the necessary substances during fasting. So, to get protein, you can eat mushrooms, nuts and legumes, and to replenish iron – greens, dried fruits, whole grains and a number of vegetables. Broccoli, sesame, legumes, almonds will help to fill the lack of calcium, while nuts, vegetable oils, tofu contain a sufficient supply of omega-3 polyunsaturated acids.

At the same time, vitamin B12 and essential amino acids can only be obtained from animal foods and medicines, since their concentration in plant foods is too low. Therefore, only medications and special supplements can make up for their lack.

“Anyone who believes that at the end of the fast, you can abruptly return to regular food, punish your body. The organs of the gastrointestinal tract during fasting are accustomed to a different eating behavior, and the simultaneous introduction of high-calorie and other “heavy” dishes will be an incredible blow. Usually, after fasting in hospitals, there is a surge of patients with pancreatitis, cholecystitis, gastritis, diarrhea, and so on,” Romasov warned.

According to him, the exit from fasting should be mild: meat and other animal products should be returned to the diet gradually, gradually increasing their range and quantity. For example, in the first two days, you can add eggs, then introduce cheese and milk, after a few days – low-fat poultry.

On February 18, doctor Ekaterina Kashukh gave advice on how to avoid weight gain during Maslenitsa. People who need to limit the calorie content of their diet are advised to cook pancakes with water and without the addition of egg yolk, and replace sugar with low-calorie sweeteners.

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