Fasting While Pregnant: Part 2

I thought I would update on my own experience, so it would make other moms who are having a little trouble feel less guilty πŸ˜€

The first few days of Ramadan seemed to be going fine…and then slowly, slowly,Β I got more and more exhausted by the time iftaar came around. I think this may also have had to do with the fact that I have never eaten a lot in suhur or iftaar; I get full too quickly. During pregnancy, I just snack a lot.

The hour before iftaar was pretty hard; I would get shaky, my body would ache because it felt weak, and my husband told me I was getting a lot meaner at that time too.

I actually wanted to skip a day, then, but I decided to wait for my doctor’s appointment before I skipped a fast. I wanted to make sure I had an excuse. The doctor has other Muslimah patients, so she knew about fasting, Ramadan, and the exception for pregnant women. As soon as she put the doppler on, I knew something was wrong because the baby’s heartbeat sounded a lot slower than usual. Plus, there would be occasional drops of the heartbeat and then it would pick back up. I asked her if everything was ok, and she said that they would monitor the baby for a little while to make sure.

Uh-oh. My husband was really worried. Alhamdulillah, when they monitored the baby, she said everything looked fine and the drops in heart rate were probably related to dehydration. This was mid-day, soΒ imagine how dehydrated the baby must be by iftaar!

One day, I actually felt faint and dizzy. We went out somewhere that day, before iftaar time, and by the time I got home, I was faint, had a headache, and felt like I would pass out. After reading this answer from Islam Q&A, I felt a lot better. The fatwa is a bit long, but I felt this part pertained to pregnant women the most:

[…] where the pregnant woman is not able to fast, either because the pregnancy is advanced or because she is physically weak, or for some other reason. In this case she should not fast, especially if her foetus is likely to be harmed, in which case it may be obligatory for her not to fast. If she does not fast, then like others who do not fast for a valid reason, she has to make up the days when that excuse no longer applies. When she gives birth, she has to make up those fasts after she becomes pure from nifaas. But sometimes the excuse of pregnancy may be lifted but then immediately followed by another excuse, namely breastfeeding. The breastfeeding mother may need food and drink, especially during the long summer days when it is very hot. So she may need not to fast so that she can nourish her child with her milk. In this case we also say to her: Do not fast, and when this excuse no longer applies, then you should make up the fasts that you have missed.Β 

I’m still worried about having to make up fasts for the around 15+ days that are left, so I thought it would be a good compromise to fast alternate days (fast one day, leave one day, fast one day, leave one day….) That way, I figured the baby and me could get our strength (and fluids!) back for the next day of fasting.

But please don’t take my word for this, check with your doctor AND local Imaam πŸ™‚ They know your own situation better than anyone, and you know your health better than anyone, so don’t be too hard on yourself. I was kind of upset and feeling like I was weak because I know there are many moms who DO fast while pregnant. But I realized I should think about the baby first and not push myself for his/her sake.

May Allah accept from all of us this Ramadan!

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10 Responses to Fasting While Pregnant: Part 2

  1. Qurat says:

    Assalamu ‘Alaikum Sister,

    I had a quick question for you. I still have approximately 10 days to make up for my Ramadan fasts and am in my first trimester of pregnancy. I’ve heard horror stories of women having miscarriages, how it may hinder in the development of the baby (i.e. I’m at a point where my baby’s brain tissue is developing approx 6 -8 weeks or so). So as you can only imagine, I’m a bit scared of fasting even at this point. I haven’t had any increased need for food, have only gained two pounds of water weight (I’m bloated), but am wanting to make up my fasts without causing any harm, or worse. If you can advise, it would be greatly appreciated. Jazakum Allah Khayr and may Allah subhana wa ta’ala reward you for your efforts on this blog..Ameen. Assalamu ‘Alaikum,

    Your Sister in Islaam,


    • ummibraheem says:

      Wa ‘alaykum as salaam wa rahmatullah,

      Congratulations on being pregnant! May Allah grant you a safe and healthy pregnancy and bless you with a healthy, righteous child who will be a means of you entering Jannah.

      First, I apologize if I came across as an expert on this subject, as I am not πŸ™‚ I’m just a mom with two kids who has had Ramadan come and go while being pregnant (during my last trimester).

      I really don’t know what to tell you in regards to fasting. I had asked an alima (who is also the wife of a mufti) if I should fast. I told her 1) I was in my last trimester, 2) I don’t gain a lot of weight during pregnancy and 3) I was worried fasting would hinder the weight gain even more. She had told me that if I thought fasting would harm my health, I shouldn’t fast & I should make them up when I could. She said I knew my health better than anyone. wAllahu ‘Alam.

      So If I were you, I would ask a knowledgable sister you know and also your doctor πŸ˜€ Even if they are non Muslim. I had asked my non Muslim doctor, and she had surprised me by saying I could fast. Although, I ended up fasting every other day, as I mentioned.

      Sorry I couldn’t be of more help… And take good care of your health! πŸ™‚

  2. Pingback: Fasting while Nursing « Umm Ibraheem

  3. Reema ElQassem says:

    Salam alaikum sister

    I am 8 weeks pregnant and nursing my 8 and a half month daughter, I am very weak, nauseous and an hour before iftaar I am fighting myself to hang in there until the adhan. Sometimes I throw up after iftaar and I eat very little for iftaar and suhoor because I always feel the urge of throwing up. I just want to ask is it safe for me to fast while nursing and pregnant? Also I feel my daughter wants to be nursed even more. Will this reduce my milk supply and will it affect my unborn babies development or cause a miscarriage?
    I fasted last year whilst being 6 months pregnant with my first child but I was ok and only threw up after iftaar but this pregnancy is so so difficult while fasting.

    • ummibraheem says:

      wa ‘alaykum as salaam wa rahmatullah, I’m so sorry to hear that you’re having a hard pregnancy, sister 😦 Ask your doctor inshaAllah. if she says it’s not safe for you, follow her advice. Don’t be too hard on yourself; there is a rukhsah for a reason πŸ™‚ Take care of yourself and your baby.

  4. ummibraheem says:

    Also, I would like to repeat that I am no where near an expert in this arrea. I was just sharing my experience so that other sisters could share theirs πŸ™‚

  5. Saf says:

    Assalamu alaikum,

    I loved reading your experiences about fasting Ramadan while pregnant.

    I’m about 35 weeks along and due right after Eid inshaallah. This is my first time fasting while pregnant! I really appreciate your insight. I’d NO idea the fetus can become dehydrated. That’s kind of scary. Last week, when I wasn’t fasting but hadn’t eaten for several hours, I had routine fetal monitoring and the baby’s heart rate dipped for 3.5 minutes at intermittent times that worried the doctor. However, they didn’t happen again so I was send home with no follow up fetal monitoring appointments. I think I may have to do alternate fasts as well, as the fasts are 16 hours here subhanallah!

    Again, I loved reading this and appreciate your sharing your thoughts and experiences.


    • ummibraheem says:

      JazakAllah khayr for such kind feedback, Sr. Safiyah πŸ™‚ When I was pregnant with my first, I remember googling information on this like crazy, but surprisingly there wasn’t much out there (or I was just really bad at searching for it! πŸ™‚

      I posted this because I wanted to help other moms out and let them know that they aren’t alone πŸ™‚ I hope inshaAllah that your Ramadan is going well, whether you are fasting or not, and that your baby is healthy!

      Ramadan Kareem! πŸ™‚

  6. emigracja says:

    Aw, this was an exceptionally good post. Spending some time and actual effort to generate a great article…
    but what can I say… I put things off a whole lot and never seem to get nearly anything done.

    • ummibraheem says:

      barakAllah feek. How kind of you πŸ™‚ I only had two kids at the time…I haven’t put up a single new post since my fourth! 😦 I’m on a major eman low 😦

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