Customarily, fasting required that a person take only one meal a day, but current Church discipline permits one to take a main meal and two lesser meals which together do not equal the main meal.
All persons who have reached their 14th birthday are bound by the law of abstinence. All adults are bound by the law of fast from their 18th to their 60th year.
- Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of abstinence from meat and meat products as well as days of fast.
- The other Fridays of Lent remain days of abstinence from meat and meat products.
- The Fridays of the year outside Lent remain days of penance, but the traditional abstinence from meat may be substituted with some other practice of voluntary self-denial or personal penance. This may be physical denial, self-restraint or acts of religion, charity or Christian witness.