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When is it appropriate to fast on Yom Kippur? Is there an age requirement? What about medical exemptions?

When is it appropriate to fast on Yom Kippur? Is there an age requirement? What about medical exemptions?

Typically, young people are expected to fast once they have become b’nai mitzvah, the age after which they are considered adults in the religious community.

Fasting is never supposed to endanger one’s life or health. Those with medical conditions that might make fasting dangerous should not fast, and individuals who are pregnant or nursing are also exempt. Abstaining from food and drink are not the only way to demonstrate one’s intention. Those who do not fast may still refrain from the other luxuries that the rabbis name as forbidden on Yom Kippur: wearing leather shoes and jewelry, bathing, anointing with lotion or perfume, and sex.

See also:  Meditation Before Yom Kippur for One Who Cannot Fast