Why don’t Catholics eat meat on Friday?

In this article, we are going to answer why don’t Catholics eat meat on Friday, what is catholicism, what a lenten season is, what is defined as meat,  is meat healthy to eat, and what type of meat you can’t eat if Catholic on Friday. 

Why don’t Catholics eat meat on Friday?

Catholics can’t eat meat on Friday but only on Fridays during the Lenten season. This is because they practice several acts of penitence during Lent that last for about 40 days leading to Easter day. The rule is more based on rules stated by the Church as an institution than on spiritual or Bible beliefs. 

Nowadays, meat is prohibited only on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, and all Fridays of the lenten seasons. Not eating meat is the minimum act of penitence a Catholic can do, each person can make up stricter penitence as desired. 

What is Catholicism?

Catholicism is the practice and beliefs of the Catholic Church. It involves all their beliefs, theology, and spirituality. Basic beliefs of Catholicism involve God’s objective existence and how to enter into a relationship with God through prayer as individuals and community.  

It is the largest denomination of Christianity meaning all Catholics are Christians which involves more religions. 

What is the Lenten season?  

The Lenten season is defined as a time of fasting and preparation for Easter Sunday or the death and resurrection of Jesus. It is a season specifically for the Catholic church and it begins on Ash Wednesday and lasts 40 days until Easter Sunday. 

To prepare for the death and resurrection of Jesus, catholic people should:

  • Pray more often to prepare your soul for Easter Sunday.
  • Give up something you enjoy or love for 40 days
  • Live a less material life
  • Practice a more respectful and empathic life with others
  • Involve in your community
  • Respect fasting days and days with no meat

Is meat healthy to eat?

Meat is healthy food to eat every day. It is one of the best sources of protein and iron. Meat is of the few proteins that contain all essential amino acids and no-heme iron.

The nutritional content of meat depends on the animal it comes from. Here is a list of the different nutrition content depending on the source of the meat

SourcePer 110 gramsCaloriesProteinCarbohydratesFat
Fish140 calories25 grams0 grams5 grams
Chicken breast160 calories28 grams0 grams7 grams
Lamb250 calories30 grams0 grams14 grams
Beef steak (beef top round)210 calories36 grams0 grams7 grams
Beef steak (T-bone)450 calories25 grams0 grams35 grams
Pork Loin242 calories14 grams0 grams30 grams

All meat, it doesn’t matter the source, are high in protein with all the essential amino acids and are a good source of zinc, vitamin b12, selenium, phosphorus, niacin, vitamin b6, choline, riboflavin, and iron. 

What is defined as meat?

Meat is defined as animal flesh that is eaten as food by humans. Meat is mainly composed of water, protein, and fat. It is edible raw but the recommendation is to eat it cooked. Meat refers to the skeletal muscle and flesh of pigs, cattle, sheep, cows, lambs, kangaroos, and goats. 

The meat ofIs called
SheepLamb or mutton
Domesticated birdsPoultry
Deer Venison

It can be seasoned or processed in a variety of ways. Unprocessed and raw meats can spoil within hours or days resulting in food poisoning if eaten. 

What type of meat a Catholic can’t eat on Friday? 

According to rules based on the Catholic church, all Catholics except pregnant women, the elderly, people younger than 14 years, or catholic with a condition that don’t let them make exceptions in their diets, should abstain from eating meat on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and all Fridays during Lent. 

Meat that is not acceptable according to the Catholic church includes:

  • Lamb
  • Chicken
  • Pork
  • Ham
  • Deer

Eggs, milk, fish, grains, fruits and vegetables are all acceptable food to add on these days. 

Follow this link for 45 recipes that will make you forget meat during the Lenten season. 


This article answered why don’t Catholics eat meat on Friday, what is catholicism, what a lenten season is, what is defined as meat,  is meat healthy to eat, and what type of meat you can’t eat if Catholic on Friday. 




What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

Leave a Comment