The Lent diet: the 40-day menuThe Lent diet: the 40-day menu

The Lent diet: the 40-day menu

Lent diet: what is it and why follow it?

All religions have rituals regarding food.
There are days of almost total abstinence from food and days instead of celebrations, in which we eat more.
Religious people who correctly observed these principles were able to moderate themselves at the table, with benefits for health and body weight.

We can say that religions have indirectly fostered a more Spartan attitude towards food , always aiming for simplicity and portion control through periods of fasting.
A “waste of food” was accepted only on feast days, with banquets and celebrations. The invitation was therefore to conscious moderation from the pleasure of food.


In the case of Catholics, for example, the period of Lent , which precedes Easter, was seen as a time of food restriction in an act of abstinence and penance, in view of the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus.
Same thing for Christmas. Eve day is a daily fasting day.
But who still follows these rules today?

Today, the journalist Barbara Palombelli is suggesting a Lenten diet to Catholics in the correct way, that is, taking up the pre-conciliar sources in hand . For many Italians, these suggestions are nothing new.
Maybe your grandparents or great-grandparents, if Catholic, roughly observed these rules before Easter.

Out of curiosity, let’s see them together, taking into account that those who do hard work, those with pathologies (for example diabetes), those over 60 and obviously small children must abstain from these rules.


The Lent diet must be followed from Ash Wednesday, for 40 days, until the Absolution of Holy Thursday.
On the days that fall on Fridays and Saturdays (at least until mass), people abstain from eating meat.
The only possible exception, Sundays.
This diet conforms to Catholic, but not Protestant, rules.
Even for Protestants fasting is followed, but for certain days.
We abstain from the diet of Lenten penance only in the case of some religious celebrations during the 40 days.

Diet for every day except Friday, Saturday (before mass) and Sunday, plus Ash Wednesday

A normal meal a day, for lunch.

Preconciliar norms.

  • A meal reduced to 60 grams of solid food in all (for example a small egg or sixty grams of fruit): it can be eaten in the morning.
  • A meal reduced to 250 grams of solid food in all.
    For example 120 grams of fish, 50 grams of bread, 80 grams of vegetables or fruit: it can be the dinner meal.
    The weight refers to cooked and not raw, in this case.
  • These rules are in addition to the free lunch meal.

In all cases: water, herbal teas, coffee, tea are allowed, vegetable or meat broth is allowed (the latter except Friday, Saturday and Ash Wednesday), juices.

Current standards. 
You have only one meal a day, for lunch, you can drink herbal teas, juices or broth for the rest of the day in order to keep yourself in strength.
In the event that you choose this alternative, the most consolidated today, you can eat little food in the morning or in the evening if you are unable to follow one meal a day.

Friday and Saturday in addition to Ash Wednesday. He himself rules for quantities, that is, one meal a day or one meal a day plus the quantities of the preconciliar rules, but no meat.
Allowed eggs, dairy products, fish.

Insights: Healthy
weight, because our grandparents did not diet. 
Diet for menopause, supplementation and advice. 

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