DailyHalacha.com for Mobile Devices Now Available

Select Halacha by date:

Or by subject:

Or by keyword:
Search titles and keywords only
Search All    

Weekly Perasha Insights
Shabbat Morning Derasha on the Parasha
Register To Receive The Daily Halacha By Email / Unsubscribe
Daily Parasha Insights via Live Teleconference
Syrian Sephardic Wedding Guide
Download Special Tefilot
A Glossary Of Terms Frequently Referred To In The Daily Halachot
About The Sources Frequently Quoted In The Halachot
About Rabbi Eli Mansour
Purchase Passover Haggadah with In Depth Insights by Rabbi Eli Mansour and Rabbi David Sutton
About DailyHalacha.Com
Contact us
Useful Links
Refund/Privacy Policy
Back to Home Page

Click Here to Sponsor Daily Halacha
"Delivered to Over 6000 Registered Recipients Each Day"

(File size: 2.01 MB)
Does One Recite a Beracha on Unhealthy Foods?

The Shulhan Aruch (Orah Haim 202) writes that if a person drinks olive oil by itself, he does not recite a Beracha before drinking, because drinking olive oil by itself is damaging to a person’s health. The Rambam (Rav Moshe Maimonides, Spain-Egypt, 1135-1204) disagreed, and ruled that one who drinks olive oil recites the Beracha of "She’ha’kol." In light of this dispute, Hacham Bension Abba Shaul (Israel, 1924-1998) ruled that one who drinks olive oil should preferably first drink a regular beverage and have in mind that the Beracha of "She’ha’kol" should cover the olive oil, so that a Beracha would not be required over the olive oil according to all opinions.

In any event, it is clear according to the Shulhan Aruch that one does not recite a Beracha over food which is detrimental to a person’s health. In light of this, we might wonder why people commonly recite Berachot over unhealthy foods. The Rambam maintained that carrots are detrimental to one’s health, and the Gemara in Masechet Gittin states that freshly-squeezed grape juice is harmful, yet we recite Berachot over these foods. Modern medicine, of course, has shown that products laden with sugar or MSG causes great harm, as do many fried and processed foods. We might wonder, therefore, why it is customary to recite Berachot over sugary foods and beverages, or over fried foods.

Hacham Ovadia explained, very simply, that unlike olive oil, these foods taste good. Olive oil is both unhealthy and foul-tasting, and for this reason, one who drinks it does not recite a Beracha. But when one eats unhealthy foods that have an enjoyable taste, a Beracha is recited despite the detrimental health effects.

Summary: One recites a Beracha over unhealthy foods even though they are detrimental to his health, because he receives enjoyment from them. However, one who eats harmful foods that do not have an enjoyable taste does not recite a Beracha.


Recent Daily Halachot...
Covering the Bread on the Table for Kiddush and Habdala
If a Candle Falls on the Table During Shabbat
May One Ask a Non-Jew to Light the Shabbat Candles After Shabbat Has Started?
Using Olive Oil and Wax Candles for the Shabbat Candle Lighting
Making a Verbal Declaration When Preparing for Shabbat
Covering the Bread on the Table on Shabbat and Yom Tob
Must One Eat Bread at Seudah Shlishit?
Must the Halla be on the Table During Kiddush?
Adding Aliyot on Shabbat
The Requirement to Eat Bread at Se’uda Shelishit
Until When Can One Recite “Asher Natan Shabbatot Li’mnuha” in Lieu of “Reseh” in Birkat Ha’mazon?
Shabbat – Practicing Penmanship in the Air; Observing a Mechanic
Having Children Perform Melacha on Shabbat; Halachot of Children During the Nine Days and Hol Ha’mo’ed
Leniencies That Apply During Ben Ha’shemashot at the Beginning and End of Shabbat
Separating Pages in a Book That are Attached
Page of 232
3479 Halachot found