Monday, October 06, 2014

Mom Kippur! Fast on Jewish Day of Atonement triggers apparent Brooklyn baby boom 

These Jewish women went from synagogue to stork.

A handful of Brooklyn moms got more than redemption on the Jewish Day of Atonement when they broke their 25-hour fasts and their water after Yom Kippur.

“It’s normal fasting should cause the labor,” said Jacob Green, whose wife Sarah, 34, gave birth to a baby girl a week early Monday.

“When I came in last time, two weeks before Passover, three and a half years ago, the ward was empty,” he added.

The beaming parents from Williamsburg were joined by other Jewish couples in the packed maternity ward at Maimonides Medical Center.

The baby boom in the busiest obstetrics unit in the state backs a new study by Israeli researchers who found that fasting can trigger labor for women in an advanced state of pregnancy.

“It was definitely a factor,” said Moshe Fishman, 26, whose wife, Tzivia, went into labor with his third child just as the shofer sounded to end the Saturday night service.

Dehydration from the fast can frequently lead to early labor pains and hike the risk of premature delivery, according to researchers Natal Shalit and Eyal Sheiner.

The pair examined the records of thousands of pregnant women older than 23. Their findings were published in the Journal of Maternal, Fetal and Neonatal Medicine.

Maimonides delivered an estimated 9,000 babies in 2013, which is more than all Brooklyn hospitals combined, records show.

The Jewish community accounts for about half of the births.

“It’s always a baby boom here,” said a nurse, who tended to 10 sleeping newborns in the hospital’s observatory nursery on Monday.

Hospital officials did not immediately comment on the baby spike, but some staff members downplayed it.

“We are always busy here,” another nurse said.

In Brooklyn, some of the moms-to-be took the long-held theory a little too literally.

“A lot of people were sent home with false contractions,” said a new mother, as she bundled her baby girl in a blanket.

“It’s all up to God.”


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