Islamic Aspects on Food and Drink

MV: This post is one of the few we have on Food and Drink in Islam. Food is a big part of Halal and Haram. It is important and ethical to know what food give you sin and what food do not. Plain and simple if you stay away form the Haram food, you will stay away from the Hell fire.

Food and drink affect our health, growth, and state of mind. Islam has given regulations about our food and drink. Islam aims to establish a healthy and moral society. It allows all wholesome and pure things to be taken as food and drink.

The Quran says:

“O Mankind, eat the lawful and good things from what is in the Earth and do not follow the foot steps of the devil. Surely, he is you open enemy.” (2:168)

It follow from this that Islam has forbidden only what is impure and harmful. Lawful things are called Halal and forbidden things are called Haram in Shariah (Islamic Law).

Islam forbids eating the following:

  • Dead animals (i.e. those which died naturally);
  • Animals slain without invoking Allah’s name;
  • Animals strangled to death;
  • Pigs;
  • Carnivorous animals;
  • Animals devoured by wild beasts.

Islam also forbids the eating of the blood of an animal (2:173; 5:3; 6:145; 16:115). Islam teaches respect and consideration for the life and welfare of animals. It is one of the many favours of Allah that he has created animals for mankind to eat by.His permission, provided we slaughter then in the way He has commanded. Islamic law requires and animal to be slaughtered by a sharp knife penetrating the inner part of animal’s neck, ensuring it dies quickly and allowing the maximum drainage of blood. Allah’s name must be mentioned at the time of the slaughter.

The meat and by-products of animals not slain in this way are Haram. Efforts should be made to obtain Halal meat from Muslim butcher. If their are Muslim butchers nearby, then  the “Kosher” meat of the Jewish people is regarded as Halal for Muslims.

There are now plenty of Muslim butchers in most of the European countries, USA, Canada, and New Zealand. In case of doubt, Muslims can eat vegetarian food (without alcoholic ingredients).

Fish and vegetables are lawful in Islam. All kinds  of intoxicating (alcoholic) drinks such as beer, wine, and spirits are prohibited. Alcoholic drinks are not at all conductive to a healthy society,

The Quran says:

“O you who believe, intoxicants and gambling, idols, and divining arrows are filthy tricks of Satan; avoid them so that you may prosper. Satan wants to incite enmity and hatred among you but means of wine and gambling and prevent you from remembering. Allah from Salah. So will you not give them up?” (5:90-91)

Drinking alcohol causes serious social problems in society. It leads to many vices and sins. Islam aims to root out al evils to ensure that society remains healthy and peaceful. Islam also forbids the taking of drugs except for medical purposes.

Muslims should begin meals by reciting

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim (In the name of Allah the most merciful, the most kind),

and finish by reciting the dua:

Alhamdu lillahil ladhi at amana wa saqana wa jaalana minal muslimin. (All praise is for Allah who gave us to eat and to drink and made us Muslims).

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) asked us to eat with the right hand and to wash our hands before and after our meals. It is better not to eat so much so as to fill the stomach. The Prophet (PBUH) also asked us not to drink water and other soft drinks in one go; rather, we should pause while drinking and it is better to have three pauses.

The Islamic system of life has very beneficial regulations. We should try to follow these rules as best as we can. we should not find excuses to avoid Islamic laws and regulations, rather we must make serious efforts to follow Allah’s command.

This information is from the book Islam Beliefs and Teachings by Ghulam Sarwar

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