By Afshan Zahra
Self restraint and Moderation is an oft-repeated virtue in the Qur’an on living a morally and socially valuable life. When it comes to our regular eating habits, this virtue is often neglected or given negligible importance. When excessive food waste and severe scarcity of food coexist as a reality in the world then we really need to ponder and reflect over the quantity of food we consume and the quantity we waste on a daily basis.
According to a report in TIME magazine, the USDA estimates in a 2014 report that around 40% of food in America goes to waste.
A solution to this grave global problem demands a shift in how much we eat and how we treat food. An individual and collective effort can reduce food waste and the imbalance between the haves and the have nots.
There is a simple yet quite insightful piece of advice in the Holy Scripture:
“O Children of Adam…eat and drink, but not excessively: verily, God does not like the excessive” (Surah Al-Ara’af Ayah 31)
Fasting in Ramadan really makes us re-think and realize the importance of food in our life. This month of patience and steadfastness reminds and verifies how little we actually need to stay strong and healthy and how our appetites are so much more alterable than we think. Breaking fast together in groups and communities when food is shared among so many people, it seems so much more abundant.
Therefore, this Holy Month provides us a food plan adequate for our survival and we must try to act upon it all year long. In this way we might play a useful role in reduction of food shortage not only in our country but worldwide.