Latest Science: How to Have A Healthy Yom Kippur Fast

Newest research shows us there may be ways to not only fully fast on Yom Kippur, but actually increase mental clarity and overall health.



The Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) fast is not always easy to follow. While it is a very sacred day, in which we celebrate the forgiveness of God, many individuals may have difficulty fasting, especially if they live active lifestyles.

The newest research however, shows us that there may be ways to help you not only fully fast on Yom Kippur, but actually increase your mental clarity and overall health while doing so.

Numerous studies have shown the benefits of fasting, such as fighting inflammation, improving heart health, and even boosting brain function. The science is clear on this – unless you’re very sick or elderly, fasting has numerous benefits. Here’s how to do it right.

First off, be sure to eat properly before you begin your fast. Eating complex carbohydrates such as whole-grain bread, pasta, rice, and couscous, will load your body up with nutrients so that you can sustain yourself during a fast, says Dr. Yitzhak Glick.

In addition to this, eat a lot of leafy green vegetables before you begin your fast. Focus on getting a high amount of protein, from kosher meat, to ensure your muscles have the nutrients they need during Yom Kippur.

If you’re a professional athlete, and wish to train on Yom Kippur, you may want to consider using a pre-workout supplement to increase your energy levels and performance.

While some believe that you should avoid consuming caffeine and stimulants while fasting, if you’re an athlete or fitness enthusiast, it may help you power through your workouts.

Be sure to drink plenty of water, as well. Most people recommend you drink at least 15 cups of water per day, before the day of fasting. Space them out, and don’t drink them all at once.

It may also be helpful to eat a lot of foods high in fiber the day before, too. This would be foods such as whole grains, oatmeal, and cruciferous vegetables.

According to this study, for example, eating a high fiber diet may make it easier to consume less calories, thus making it easier to fast. Researchers found a link between eating a high fiber diet and consuming less food throughout the day.

After your fast is complete, start by drinking a cup of warm water with a little bit of sugar, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar. A few minutes later, consider having some tea.

Do not eat a large meal immediately after your fast ends, as this can cause a spike in blood sugar, which may lead to dizziness and increased heart rate

This is mean to jumpstart your metabolism, and prepare your stomach for food. After this, it is advised that you eat a small meal, such as a sandwich, or a piece of meat with some bread.