Yom Kippur 2016 Fasting & When to Break the Fast Rules

yom kippur


Yom Kippur begins tonight at sundown and with the holiday, comes a tradition of fasting. The holiday occurs on the 10th day of Tishri and is called the “Day of Atonement,” a day to atone for the sins of the past year “between man and God,” according to JewFAQ.

On Yom Kippur, many abstain from work, attend synagogue and carry out 25 hours of fasting. Fasting should have begun yesterday before sunset as it generally begins on the evening before Yom Kippur. As for the end time, fasting ceases after the sun goes down on the day of Yom Kippur. So when is sunset? Below is a list of times throughout the United States in order to give you an idea of when fasting can end.

New York – 6:21 p.m. ET
Los Angeles – 6:23 p.m. PT
Miami – 6:57 p.m. ET
St. Louis – 6:28 p.m. ET
Austin – 7:04 p.m. PT
Seattle – 6:28 p.m. PT
New Orleans – 6:33 p.m. CT
Charleston – 6:51 p.m. ET
Phoenix – 5:59 p.m. MST
Chicago – 6:15 p.m. CT

For those who do not live in the above regions, you can click here for a sunset calculator to see what time the sun sets in your area.

As for the rules when it comes to Yom Kippur fasting and traditions, below are some major points to remember:

– Water is not allowed unless health is concerned.
– According to Chabad, additional things that those observing Yom Kippur avoid include wearing leather shoes, bathing/showering, having sex or using any lotions/creams. Some also abstain from driving, wearing gold jewelry or turning on lights in their homes. Wearing white is also common for the occasion.
– For fasting, if you have had your bar or bat mitzvah, you are of age to fast. This includes pregnant women. But, if you are sick or have an illness, you should consult your doctor.

Now let’s discuss the breaking of the fast, which is the first meal eaten after fasting. Read on for the rules and customs:

– When fasting ends, it is often signaled by a long blast of the shofar, which is actually a ram’s horn.
– “Breaking the Fast” is a celebration. Family and friends often gather for a feast together, featuring foods like kugel, egg dishes, and bagels. While some choose to indulge in heavy meals for breaking the fast, others choose a lighter route, which is not so rough on the stomach.

If you are attending or hosting your own breaking the fast this holiday, below are some recipes to choose from. Click on the ones that are of interest to you in order to get the instructions on how to make them.

Apple Matzo Kugel

Dried-Cranberry Bagel Spread

“Lekach”—Honey Cake

Pear and Ricotta Blintzes with Spiced Maple-Butter Sauce

Old-Fashioned Potato Kugel

Homemade Bagels
Chickpea Pasta Salad

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Read more about Yom Kippur in Spanish at

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