Tag Archives: vegan

Vegan perspective: Medication could contain animal by product

When Allison Parks first became a vegan it took her ten minutes to read one food label while shopping. 
 
“It used to be a hassle to read labels [] when I first became a vegan because I had no idea what I was looking for,” the Flagler College junior said. “But now that I know what to look out for it’s actually quite fun. Vegans find humor in the oddest things.”
 
It’s been over four years since Parks has made the switch from meat eater to eating animal free products. This means not eating any fish, honey, milk, or eggs in addition to meats.

But it’s not just food that Parks has to check the labels on. Many medications have animal products in them, namely gelatin. Gelatin is used as an excipient, or coating agent, in medicines and for making medication thicker. In other words, it’s what encapsulates the capsule or forms the pill into a solid as opposed to a powder. Gelatin comes from the bones and skins in animals.

“I don’t think there should be any animal products in medication. Especially in today’s culture there are cheaper, more ethical options for everything,” Parks said. “There is absolutely no need to use and exploit animals the way we do.”

Parks says she is aware that there are animal products in medicine and always checks every label. But in a new study published in the BMJ Postgraduate Medical Journal, less than a quarter of its 500 participants with dietary restrictions such as veganism specifically asked the doctor or pharmacist about the composition of a pill they were prescribed.

This is a stark contrast to the 43.2% of the study population that “would prefer not to take animal product-containing medication, even if no alternative were available.”

So is it the doctor’s responsibility to inform patients of the ingredients of a medication or the patient’s responsibility to check the label?

“I think the doctor should let the patient know because a lot of the time, like in my case, I would have never guessed that there would be animal products in medication. I only found out when someone told me, I wasn’t actively seeking the information. The doctor should always keep their patients informed about what exactly they’re putting in their bodies,” Parks said.

2 Comments

Filed under Feature, Features, Fitness, Food, Health, News, Science

My attempt at Baba-Ghanoush

I’ve been dying to try out this Baba-Ghanoush recipe from paleolifestyle.com, which is where I get a lot of my recipes. BG is an arabic dip similar to hummus.

I didn’t have eggplants last time I wanted to make it, so I made it using cucumbers instead. It was an excellent dip, very good for a veggie tray or a spread on a sandwich.

Baba Ghanoush

Baba-Ghanoush:

Serves 8

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggplants;
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced;
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice;
  • 2 tbsp tahini (optional);
  • 3 tsp extra virgin olive oil;
  • 1 tsp cumin (optional);
  • Salt and pepper to taste;
  • Fresh parsley, optional, for garnishing.

Technique

  1. To roast the eggplants, either use your grill, the open flame of a gas stove or your oven. If using an open flame, keep the eggplant near the flame and turn them often to darken the skin evenly. If using your stove, prick the skin with a fork and roast for about 35 minutes in a 400 F oven.
  2. Put the roasted eggplants in a bowl of cold water, wait a bit and then peel off the skin.
  3. Place the roasted eggplant, garlic, lemon juice, tahini, olive oil, cumin in a blender and blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Cool in the refrigerator and serve with extra olive oil on top and fresh parsley.

2 Comments

Filed under Food, Health, Paleo Diet, recipes, Vegan

Chicken eggs are not baby chickens

Call me an idiot, but I always thought that when I ate a chicken egg, I was eating an embryo. I don’t know what’s worse, me thinking that I was eating a baby chicken, or me being okay with eating an embryo. But it turns out, that it is a common misconception that the eggs we buy at the store are fertilized.

Photo Credit: Clker.com, shared by "Lucy"

In fact, the eggs at the supermarket will never develop into a chick. They are unfertilized eggs. Hens need a rooster in order to have a fertilized egg. (well duh.)

No the white string that is in many eggs is not the umbilical cord. It’s called the chalazae, which helps anchor the yolk to the egg.

And blood spots are not a sign that the egg is fertilized. They are caused by a rupture of blood vessels on the yolk’s surface.

Now that I dispelled that nasty misunderstanding, the world of laying eggs is still a bizarre one.

Some people, *cough* PETA, refer to the process of laying eggs as a “chicken period.”

What the hell?

But, it is kind of true. Hens lay one egg about once a day for a period of four to six days and then rest. They are expelling the unfertilized eggs.

Now I am very confused to why vegans don’t eat eggs. They’re not baby chickens. Are they protesting the terrible conditions chickens are grown in? If so, buy locally and support a more noble business.

Mother nature is providing for us. True, eggs are high in cholesterol, but fat isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It gives you the energy to go about your day, especially if your active and eat natural foods like fruits, veggies and meat.

I’m not saying eat eggs in mass quantities everyday, but it won’t kill you to eat them, and it’s not killing any vulnerable baby chickens either.

6 Comments

Filed under chicken, Feature, Features, Food, funny, Health, humor, Opinion, Personal, Science, Vegan

When vegans attack I ask, ‘is there one right way to eat?’

Last week, I had the pleasure of reading some very heated ramblings about a college course an acquaintance of mine was taking, called the psychology of food.

Being a vegan, she went onto say that the book her professor wrote was “backwards.” 3o comments later, her Facebook friends, many of them vegans as well, were supporting her, giving her “intelligent” advice such as “Pardon me, my dear []… Fuck that shit. You tell her what’s up!” and “You need to fight this bitch!”

Funny, I always thought vegans were peaceful people, abstaining from meat to save the animals or some bullshit like that. But they showed more malicious behavior towards their fellow man than they did to some soulless creature that cultures all over  the world have been eating since the beginning of time.

I have to agree with this young lady that I find it upsetting that the professor doesn’t believe in eating fruits or vegetables. But I also find it hard to believe the professor actually believes this. I suspect there might be some human error in misunderstanding the text.

Assumptions aside, I put my two cents in, agreeing that fruits and veggies are a vital part of a diet, but that meat is also good and can be substituted with other protien-filled options if one is not comfortable consuming meat. And then, the vegan attacked me.

I didn’t reply. There is no arguing with someone set in stone.

She made my point, however, but from the viewpoint of cereal grains. We’ve been brought up to think whole wheat is a healthy option. People eat bread everyday to make sandwiches, as a side item to their spaghetti, a roll to their bbq, toast. Think about toast. A piece of bread with fat and sugar spread on it, optionally of course. Our bodies can’t digest all this grain.

I believe in meat. I don’t believe in over-indulging in meat. But I believe that we should eat meat. I think that the way it is prepared now days, in filthy conditions with animals being fed a largely corn diet, which our bodies also can’t digest, is contaminating the sacredness of meat. Combined with a weathly country that can afford to buy meat and eat it all the time, along with boxed fatty foods and no desire to go outside and play anymore, of course the obesity and diabetes rates in this country are spiked.

This young woman did mentioned there have been studies about meat that links it to cancer, as many other things in our daily lives are linked to cancer. So I found a study and analyzed it.

First off, the study was done by The National Cancer Institute. Not a completely unbiased party. They’re out to link everything to cancer. They’re expecting things to cause cancer. They want to scare us.

Second off, the study only regarded red meats, such as “beef, pork, bacon, ham, hamburger, hot dogs, liver, pork sausage, steak, and meats in foods such as pizza, stews, and lasagna.” But what about white meat such as turkey, fish and chicken? So, I say to my dear acquaintance, is all meat bad, or just half of it?

Third, the study was done with 50 to 71 year olds. Come on! 71? They’re almost dead anyways. There are too many other health problems that these over-the-hill participants could have developed, say I don’t know, throughout their whole life, that could have accounted for an early mortality rate.

Plus, what about the corn diet these animals are eating. Our bodies can’t digest corn. And the filthy conditions they’re grown in and prepared in. They wash meat with ammonia. That sounds more cancerous to me than the meat.

I do agree that meat does have cholesterol and that red meat shouldn’t be consumed nearly as much as Americans eat it. But I don’t believe that we should completely knock it off a diet.

Of course, there are many that would disagree with me. You can still have a healthy diet being vegan. I guess there is just no one right way to eat.

Mmmm, surf n' turf, my favorite. Photo Credit: partyblueprintsblog.com

Leave a comment

Filed under chicken, Facebook, Feature, Features, Food, Health, humor, Kitchen, Paleo Diet, People, Personal, Vegan