Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Illinois State chapter.

Once again, it’s that time of year, when Muslims are most excited to celebrate. Ramadan started in March this year and will conclude in April. 

Ramadan is a month of daily fasting from sunrise to sunset in which Muslims abstain from all food, drink and sinful actions. It is considered the holiest month and people are encouraged to pray more, give charity and do good. 

This year I have noticed many non-Muslims fasting as well, which was interesting. Some are fasting for a day to ‘try it out’ or are supporting a Muslim friend. I have observed many non-Muslim people online on social media fasting during Ramadan because they enjoy the benefits of the month. 

TikToker @alex.sless is fasting for the second time this year as a non-Muslim. He says “I love the concept of Ramadan. I see it as I have 11 months of the year to do whatever I want, and then one month of just discipline. It’s also really nice because you just cut off any kind of unhealthy habits. And I think the biggest takeaway from me, it creates a lot of discipline, and at the end of the day that turns into confidence. Then moving forward the next 11 months are a little bit more productive and more positive”

The act of fasting daily for 30 consecutive days is a physical and mental challenge. This challenge does create discipline because you are fighting your impulses and proving to yourself that you are capable. The first few days are the hardest but once your mind starts to form habits, it gets easier. 

Personally, I find it nerve-racking to think about how I will fast while doing school and going to work, however as it starts I find that Ramadan tends to fly by and suddenly, it’s over and I did it. 

During Ramadan, I can feel myself living more intentionally, as I am aware of every action and whether it’s good or bad for me. Breaking bad habits is hard, and I enjoy the feeling of unity during this time as I know Muslims all around the world are trying to better themselves with me. It helps make me feel less alone in my struggles. 

Ramadan can also be a great start to better fitness and food habits. It’s essential to have a good breakfast so you can stay full all day long. This pushes people to choose healthier and more nutritious food. Many Muslims will wake up early at 5 a.m. to eat Suhoor and drink lots of water before their fast starts. 

Another benefit of Ramadan is building gratitude. The month of Ramadan is known to generate the most donations and charity work. This is because after a long day of hunger, we are grateful to break our fast in a home full of food. This is a privilege that many poor, homeless or people in poverty do not have. 

I find it very humbling that I feel so hungry all day but get full after a few bites. It really puts into perspective how fleeting emotions can be. What felt like the worst hunger of my life was cured by so little. It makes me reflect on how our desires are often way beyond our needs. 

Lastly, Ramadan is a time to celebrate with family and friends. Many host dinner parties to break fast together. This encourages us to be engaged in our communities and build positive relationships. Many people will learn recipes from their older family members and will have traditions during this month. 

Overall, if all you gain from Ramadan is hunger and thirst then you have missed the goal. There is so much more to be learned from this special month. 

Hala Abdelrazek

Illinois State '24

Hello everyone! I am a current Junior at ISU. Things I enjoy would include: baking, reading, crafting, and watching tiktoks; halaabdelrazek8. I hope to graduate and work as a Secondary Mathematics teacher. However, due to my love for journalism as well, I am eager to write for HerCampus and be part of this community:)