Fasting and Pregnant and Nursing Women
Q 741: A pregnant woman does not know whether fasting will harm the baby or not. Does she have to fast?
A: If she has reasonable grounds to fear that fasting would harm her baby, then, it is not obligatory for her to fast, otherwise she must fast.
Q 742: A pregnant woman fasted while she was breast-feeding her baby. When she delivered, the baby was found dead. From the beginning she had thought that her fasting might be harmful, but she fasted nevertheless. 1. Was her fasting valid? 2. Is she liable to pay blood money? 3. What is the ruling in her case if she did not think that fasting would be harmful but later found it to be otherwise?
A: If she fasted even after she had reasonable fears that fasting would be harmful to her or her baby, or she discovered later that fasting was harmful to herself or her baby, then her fast is invalid, and she has to perform its qaḍā’. However, the liability of paying the blood money depends upon proving that her fasting caused the death of the fetus.
Q 743: Upon delivery, Allah Almighty blessed me with a son who is being breast-fed. The blessed month of Ramadan is approaching, and at present, I am capable of fasting. However, if I fast, my milk will dry up, as I have a weak constitution — and my baby wants milk every ten minutes. What should I do?
A: If there is fear of harm to your baby due to a decrease in the quantity of milk or its drying up caused by fasting, it is permissible for you to break the fast. And for every day you missed the fast, you have to give one mudd [750 grams] of food to the poor, in addition to performing the qaḍā’ of the missed fasts, later.
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