(US) Is Your Medicine Vegan? Probably Not
Go looking for animal products, and apparently you will find them everywhere.
That's the takeaway from the book Veganissimo A to Z, recently
translated into English for the first time. What's veganissimo? It's
veganism of the highest order, according to the German authors Reuben
Proctor and Lars Thomsen, who call themselves "professional vegans."
(Is veganism a healthful way to eat? Sorry, we're not going there in
Proctor and Thomsen, who've been vegan since 2000 and 1990,
respectively, are willing to avoid animal products on ethical grounds
at nearly all costs. And a perusal of their guide to more than 2,500
substances is enough to give even a non-vegan a bout of vicarious
anxiety — the byproducts of dead animals, it seems, are lurking in
everything from diet supplements and medicine to sporting goods and
When it comes to pharmaceuticals, the authors say, there's a
surprising amount of animal in many of those pills in your medicine
cabinet. And that can present vegans with serious quandaries, pitting
their health against their ideals.
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