A total of 173 students were requested to respond to pre-designed self administered questionnaire. Table describes the socio-demographic characteristics of the families enrolled in the study. Majority of families (83.8%) were constituted of six of more members with a mean ± SD accounted for 7.5 ± 2.9 members, and it was also noted that the number of males (mean ± SD 2.9 ± 1.3) was less than females (mean ± SD 3.7 ± 1.7). A slightly more than one third of the fathers (39.3%) and less percentage of the mothers (34.1%) had university qualifications. The results showed that only few minorities of the families (4.8%) had monthly income less than SAR 3000, while 41.7% had monthly income SAR 10000+. Half of the respondents (52%) were living in the North of Jeddah. Regarding the housings, half of the families (52%) were living in apartments and 40.5% were living in Villas and the rest (7.5%) were living in public houses. Almost two thirds (68.2%) of the respondents owned their houses.
Characteristics of the families included in the study (n = 173)
Figure displays distribution of the studied families according to their knowledge and interest about rationalizing consumption. Almost one third of the families who indicated that they had interest in rationalizing consumption (31%) had the perception of not having adequate knowledge about it, and it was observed that 20% of the families who indicated that they had enough knowledge about rationalization of consumption were not interested in adopting it. This gap in the interest and knowledge about rationalization of consumption was statistically significant p < 0.05.
Knowledge and interest of the respondent families regarding rationalizing consumption.
Majority of the study group (79.4%) indicated that their expenditure increases during Ramadan (Table ). This notion applies to both the families who are interested in rationalizing consumption (79.5%) and those who are not (80%). Nevertheless, it was observed that the percentage was significantly lower among families who indicated that they have adequate knowledge about rationalizing consumption (74.8%) when compared to those who did not have adequate knowledge (86.2%) p < 0.05. On the other hand it was observed that neither the monthly income nor the education level of the parents had an impact on the mode of expenditure during Ramadan p > 0.05 (Table ). Regarding the extra expenditure of money during Ramadan, the results showed that half of those who increased expenditure during Ramadan (50.8%) are increasing it with a percentage of 50% and the other half 49.2% reported an increasing expenditure by 25%.
Expenditure during Ramadan according to characteristics of the study group
The reasons behind increasing expenditure during Ramadan were displayed in Figure in descending order. The social reasons including increased frequency of family gatherings, invitations and celebrations constituted the main reason (37%), followed by the psychological reasons (30.1%) in the form of the insight desire for imitating others. The charity and religious factors came after as reasons for increasing expenditure during Ramadan (28.9) and (15%) respectively.
Reasons behind increasing expenditure during Ramadan.
Regarding timing and frequencies of meals during Ramadan, the majority of the respondents (88.8%) pointed out that they take a main meal at Sohor, and slightly more than two thirds (68.8%) indicated that they take a meal immediately after sunset i.e. Maghreb prayer (Figure ).
Preferable time for taking meals during Ramadan.
In Figure the foods commonly consumed at Ifttar are displayed. Dates are on the top of list (97.7%) at breakfast meal (Ifttar) during Ramadan, followed by meat soups (95.4%) and Sambosa or Samosa which is pastry filled with meat or cheese (93.6%). Also, it was noted that the majority of the respondents (82.1%) are consuming pastries and coffee (75.7%). Almost two thirds of the respondents (68.8%) indicated that they consume salads, dairy products (65.9%) and bread (61.8%). On the other hand, it was observed that the least food items to be consumed during Ramadan are the fisheries, where it was found that only 8.1% of the respondents indicated that they eat shrimps regularly and 7.5% marked that they consume fish. Soft drinks were used by very few minorities of the families (2.3%), (figure ).
Food items usually consumed during breakfast meal (Ifttar) of Ramadan.
Table illustrates the breakfast meal preparation, consumption and the ways of dealing with the remnants of food stuffs. Majority of families (75.1%) were rarely buying readymade foods for breakfast and only (1.8%) always buy it from outside. Meanwhile, it was found that the father is the chief person (56.1%) responsible for buying the food ingredients, and the mother is the main person shouldering the responsibility of preparing the breakfast meal (74.6%), and 12.1% of the families were depending on the maids for preparing it. Regarding the breakfast meals' remnants, it was realized that in general 84.4% of the families indicated that they usually have remnants of the breakfast meals. One third of the families indicated that always there are remnants of the breakfast meals in addition to 51.5% who indicated that it is sometimes occurring. Moreover, it was realized that the majority of these remnants (75.2%) are stored for being used later, and 22.5% are using it for charity purposes. Only few minorities (2.3%) addressed that they are discarding the remnants of breakfast meals (Table ).
Breakfast meal preparation and consumption during Ramadan
Rice headed the food items usually consumed in Sohor during Ramadan (80.9%) followed by bread (70.5%) and salads (69.4%), (Figure ). At the same time, it was remarked that almost two thirds of the families are taking meat and cooked vegetables (61.8%) in Sohor. In addition, half of the families (49.7%) are consuming dairy products and slightly less than half of them are eating fresh vegetables. On the other side, it was realized that the least food items consumed by the families in Sohor were the soft drinks (19.7%) and sweets (22.5%).
Food items usually consumed during Sohor meal in Ramadan.
In contrast to breakfast meal where the respondents prepare it at home, (59%) of the families are buying prepared food for the Sohor meal, and more than one third (38.7%) are doing so sometimes. Only few minorities (2.3%) indicated that they are always buying readymade food for Sohor meals.
Almost two thirds of the respondents (59.5%) self-reported weight gain among some or all of the family members after Ramadan, and when asked about their perspective explanation for the weight gain, 40% attributed the weight gain to the types and quality of foods usually consumed during Ramadan being rich in fat and sweets, and almost one third (31.2%) articulated that the reason for weight gain during Ramadan is the lack of physical exercise (Table ).
Self-reported weight gain during Ramadan
It was obvious that two thirds (65.2%) of those who indicated that there is increased expenditure during Ramadan realized weight gain among some or all of family members after Ramadan. The reverse was observed for those who indicated that they did not increase expenditure during Ramadan as they expressed no weight gain realized among their family members (62.9%) and this difference was statistically significant p < 0.05.