Answered by Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil
Is there any spiritual benefit from refraining from eating, even in private, for someone who is not allowed to fast? I was told that some women do this to get closer to Allah, out of respect for the Holy Month. I understand eating in public is not permissible, but what about in private?
I pray this finds you well. May Allah reward your for seeking clarification.
It it praiseworthy and a sign of good adab for a menstruating woman to avoid eating in public during Ramadan. However, especially for women who are weakened during their menses, it is important for them to keep nourishing themselves in private. Refraining from eating in private can cause harm, and it is sinful to harm oneself. Just as a woman who is not in menstruation is rewarded for abstaining from food, a woman who is menstruating is rewarded for eating in private, so that she can have the strength to worship Allah in other ways.
Please refer to this beautiful article to see examples of how menstruating women can get closer to Allah in Ramadan – Worship in Ramadan For a Menstruating Woman.
[Ustadha] Raidah Shah Idil
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Ustadha Raidah Shah Idil has spent almost two years in Amman, Jordan, where she learned Shafi’i’ fiqh, Arabic, Seerah, Aqeedah, Tasawwuf, Tafsir and Tajweed. She continues to study with her Teachers through Qibla Academy and SeekersHub Global. She also graduated with a Psychology and English degree from University of New South Wales.