Can A Pregnant Woman Fast On Yom Kippur?

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February 14, 2023 by Marjorie R. Rogers, MA (English), Certified Consultant

Yes, a pregnant woman can fast on Yom Kippur. There is no specific prohibition against fasting for pregnant women in the Torah. However, if a pregnant woman feels that she cannot fast safely, she may breaking the fast.

As the Jewish High Holy Days approach, many people are wondering if it is permissible for a pregnant woman to fast on Yom Kippur. The short answer is yes, a pregnant woman can fast on Yom Kippur, but there are some important caveats to keep in mind. First and foremost, if you are pregnant or nursing, you should consult with your physician before undertaking any sort of fasting.

It is possible that fasting could pose a risk to your health or the health of your child, so it is always best to err on the side of caution. Secondly, even if your doctor gives you the okay to fast, you should listen to your body and eat or drink if you feel faint or dizzy. Dehydration can be dangerous for both you and your baby, so it is important to make sure that you stay hydrated during the day.

Finally, remember that the purpose of fasting on Yom Kippur is to reflect on one’s sins and seek forgiveness from God. If you are unable to fast due to pregnancy or nursing, there are other ways to achieve this goal. You can still attend services and pray for forgiveness; just be sure not to put yourself in any danger by attempting to fast when it isn’t safe for you or your baby.

Can a pregnant woman fast on Yom Kippur?

Who is Exempt from Fasting on Yom Kippur?

Anyone who is physically or mentally unable to fast, including young children, the elderly, pregnant women and nursing mothers are exempt from fasting on Yom Kippur. Also, those who are ill or suffering from a medical condition that could be exacerbated by fasting are also exempt.

Is It Ok to Fast If You are Pregnant?

It is not recommended to fast if you are pregnant, as it can put your body under stress and may be detrimental to your health and the health of your baby. If you are considering fasting, please speak with your healthcare provider first.

Why You Shouldn’T Fast While Pregnant?

pregnant women should not fast because it can lead to dehydration and low blood sugar levels. Fasting can also cause contractions of the uterus, which can lead to preterm labor.

Can A Pregnant Woman Fast On Yom Kippur?


Fasting on Yom Kippur While Breastfeeding

The Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is a day of fasting. This means that Jews are not supposed to eat or drink from sunset on the night before until nightfall on the day of Yom Kippur. This can be a difficult fast to keep, especially for those who are breastfeeding.

There are a few things that nursing mothers should keep in mind if they choose to fast on Yom Kippur. First, it is important to stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water during the day, and try to avoid caffeine and alcohol, which can dehydrate you.

Second, eat a good meal before the fast begins. A nutritious meal will help you get through the day without feeling too hungry or lightheaded. Third, take breaks as needed.

If you feel faint or dizzy, sit down and put your head between your knees until you feel better. And finally, don’t forget to pray! Fasting on Yom Kippur is an opportunity to focus on your relationship with God and ask for forgiveness for your sins.

If you decide to fast on Yom Kippur while breastfeeding, there are a few things you can do to make it easier. Pump or nurse right before the fast begins so that your breasts are not too full when it starts. And try to schedule feedings for right after the fast ends; this way your baby won’t be too hungry and will be able to go longer between feedings.


A pregnant woman may fast on Yom Kippur, but she should consult with her rabbi or physician first. If she is in good health and the pregnancy is proceeding normally, fasting is permissible. However, if she is experiencing any complications, she should not fast.

About Author (Marjorie R. Rogers)

The inspiring mum of 6 who dedicates her time to supporting others. While battling with her own demons she continues to be the voice for others unable to speak out. Mental illness almost destroyed her, yet here she is fighting back and teaching you all the things she has learned along the way. Get Started To Read …