In the Christian Orthodox church calendar, two days are marked, called Christmas Eve: Christmas Eve and Epiphany. The first of them is the final day of Filippov's fast (January 6th), the second is celebrated on the eve of the feast of the Baptism of the Lord (January 18th).
Both Christmas Eve are marked in the church charter as fast days, and it is written that on these days an orthodox person needs a strict fast. Thus, the Orthodox Christian prepares himself spiritually for the great joy of the meeting of the two celebrations.
However, this does not mean that a believer should not eat these days, to the extent that there is no food used to maintain his physical strength. On the days before the birth of the Savior and the acceptance of the Old Testament baptism by Jesus Christ in the Jordan, dry eating is prescribed - a lean meal that excludes vegetable oil, and without cooking. Fish is also excluded from the Christian diet on these holy days.
On Christmas Eve, believers eat sychivo (a special lean dish made from wheat, saturated with honey and decorated with marmalade, sweets, dried fruits), eat baked food, use salads without animal products, that is, from vegetables or fruits.
For sick believers, a slight indulgence in fasting is allowed (for this it is necessary to take a priest's blessing) in the form of a permit for vegetable oil.
There is a tradition among the people not to eat or drink anything at all on Christmas Eve until the first heavenly body (star) appears, that is, until evening. However, this is a personal matter for everyone, because the church charter does not imply such abstinence. The liturgical books say that on Christmas Eve, you can eat food after the end of the Vespers service, which is celebrated on January 6 and 18 in the morning in conjunction with the Divine Liturgy.