VeggieBoards banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is something that I have been battleing with for years, and am wondering where other people stand on it.<br><br><br><br>
As many know, gelatin is a non-vegi ingredient. In addition to the obvious uses, it frequently appears in the shells of pills. Obviously if this is a concern, one could avoid buying any OTC pills with gelatin, as there is almost always options that don't have gelatin. However, what about perscriptions? Luckily, since I've been a vegi I have never encountered this problem. If I were diagnosed with something really bad, and not taking the appropriate medication could be potentially life-threatening (or even crippling), and my perscriptions were for pills that had gelatin, I'm unsure what I would do.<br><br><br><br>
My opinion on this has wavered back and forth over time (as I moved from hardcore vegetarian (nearly vegan) to a more "realistic vegetarian"), but what would others do in this situation (consuming small amounts of gelatin to save your life / your quality of life)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,983 Posts
I'm a relatively new vegetarian, and so I'm struggling with a lot of questions like that right now. I personally don't equate taking a pill for my health as the same as eating a bowl of jello. I would rather have vegetarian medicines when possible, but I'm not strong enough to let myself suffer for the lack of them.<br><br><br><br>
I have a bad personal history with pills. As I child I could not swallow them and had to drink all sorts of nasty liquid versions. With my memory of that time, I don't think I could swallow a liquid medicine now without gagging and spitting it all up. I already can't eat anything grape-flavored for the same reason (pharmecutical companies seem to think kids really like grapes).<br><br><br><br>
Yet I still have extreme difficulty swallowing pills. I need gelatin-covered Tylonel because a)There are times when I just can't suffer through pain, b)Tylonel is one of the few pain medications I don't suffer side effects from, but the regular kind is too big for me to swallow, and c)liquid tylonel is one of the worst-tasting medications that I have ever tried.<br><br><br><br>
With all those justifications, I still feel horrible about it, but at the moment I do what I need to do for my own well-being. I only take medicines like that when I absolutely need them and if I can find a suitable vegetarian substitute, I will use that instead.<br><br><br><br>
On a side note, I'm currently taking antibiotics with a gelatin coat. This was my first visit to the doctor since becoming veggie, and I didn't think to ask about the pills until I picked them up at the pharmacy and saw what they looked like. They're not helping either, so I'm not too happy about downing three gelatin coated pills a day for no reason.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,691 Posts
Fortunately, I haven't had to deal with this issue yet-- one of the things I did when I went veg was also to get myself off of all drugs I was on-- oral contraceptives, decongestants and allergy medicines, various vitamin/herbal supplements and pharmaceuticals for frequent migraines. Going veg allowed me to improve my health enough that getting off them was feasible. Of course, going off OC required some alternate plans...<br><br><br><br>
I think I would ask my doctor what alternatives were available-- both in terms of alternate drugs and alternate forms of the same drug. Some drugs come in liquid, powder, nasal sprays, etc, for people who can't take pills. So I'd research the range of products available, and if there was no gelatin-free one available, then I'd have to balance the seriousness of my conditon and the importance of treating it with drugs as opposed to other kinds of treatment vesus my desire not to purchase or consume gelatin.<br><br><br><br>
Also, try asking your doctor if you can examine some samples before leaving with a scrip in hand. It seems most doctors these days are loaded down with samples and love to give them away. They sometimes come with full patient information.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,984 Posts
special interest groups should emplore drug manufactures to provide vegan alternatives to their medications for a small premium.<br><br><br><br>
I would pay an extra 5-10% to have vegan versions.<br><br><br><br><br><br>
this is saying for medications that do not have natural alternatives - as we shouldnt take a pill for random reasons - but for real things that need real medications - vegan alternatives would be awesome.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
In general I agree that pills should not be taken willy-nilly (isn't that fun to say?). The only times I can remember taking medication recently has been for migranes (and I think for maybe one or two really bad headaches). I've actually come to think that water is the fix for most ailments (headache, sore throat, dizzyness, sore muscles, etc...), I'm not sure if it actually helps, but in my head it does (and because of this combined with my hypochondria, I drink a ton of water).<br><br><br><br>
I like the idea of the vegan medications, however do you think that insurance companies would actually pay for the alternatives?
 
Joined
·
11,550 Posts
i think everybody has to decide for themselves whats enough, and whats too much, for themselves.<br><br><br><br>
obviously, you're not much use as a veg*an if you're dead, or lying around in a mangled state, so that really should be your first priority when it comes to choosing to take, or not take medications that you need.<br><br><br><br>
some medicines aren't as 'need' based as others though- i think sometimes we can automatically pick a drug over a lifestyle change- i'm know i'm bad for popping an asprin when i have a headache- and i'm pretty sure i don't have a headache because i have an asprin deficiency - more often than not, a glass of water, a quick lie down, or something else like a steamy bowl of hot water and menthol to breathe in, would work just as well. I think when something isn't really deadly serious, and/or when traditional medicine isn't working for you, i think its definately worth exploring other more natural alternatives.<br><br><br><br>
basically, if you gotta take something animal based to live with a decent quality of life, then i'd do it without a problem. in the next 50 years of your life you can make a positive difference to the world by your other life actions (eg: if you're into recycling, education, politics (lol) making positive worldwide or grassroots changes, volunteering, animal rights, environmentalism, or whatever is important to you) and you can always work to do things to change the medical system thats failing you, like lobbying the pharmacutical industry to change its product ingredients, while you take the drugs you need to live a positive life.<br><br><br><br>
beyond that, like tesseract said, a lot of drugs do come in different versions- i've managed to get solid tablets instead of capsules for some medications i used to take (although many are encapsulated for slow release, so you can't always work around that) some medicines are available in a sugar free format, which gets around the lactose problem (i take a kiddies banana flavoured liquid version of a prescription antihistamine, instead of the pills, for this reason!) and there are lots of options to explore with your doctor.<br><br><br><br>
being dead, or really sick, isn't an option i'd pick, over a gelatine capsule.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
0 Posts
I think its a personal choice and i havent hd to deal with it..i would do anything that i could NOT to use gelatin based products...but if it came to life and death i would take the pills to get better/stay alive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,707 Posts
If I had to I would use them, but the only pills I take are vitimines, paracetimol and caffine pills - of which are easily bought without gelitine ect, and if they did have it in I would probally just go without - it isn't exactly life or death or even life or illness.<br><br><br><br>
I would deffinatly try my hardest to get something without.<br><br><br><br>
Most vegetarians I know don't "do the gelitine thing" as they put it, ie: they can still eat there precious haribo. *cough*<br><br><br><br>
Anyhoo, I don't see the problem with taking needed medication if there isn't another veg*an alternitive.<br><br><br><br>
You can't make a difference to animals or the world dead can you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,858 Posts
to save my life, damn right I would eat gelatine.<br><br><br><br>
When I was a bit younger and shyer I had a prescription for some minor illness and the tablets contained gelatine. I just blanked it from my mind and took them, but I wasn't happy about it. I don't think I would do that now, but I'm not entirely sure.<br><br><br><br>
But for vitamins, etc, I choose gelatine-free versions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,983 Posts
<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Pirate Ferret</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
what about popping the capsule and trying to take the middle seperately? or does the gelatine go beyond the coating?</div>
</div>
<br><br><br>
You have to be careful doing that. Usually it's okay (I had my doctor's permission to do it with most of my pills when I couldn't swallow them), but sometimes they're meant to be slow-release, and taking it all at once could be harmful. Also, there are some pills that you aren't supposed to chew or break because the inside could harm your mouth or throat (Sudafed comes to mind. I did it anyway and it was one of the bitterest things I've ever tasted).<br><br><br><br>
Edited to fix spelling.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
87 Posts
I once needed some minor surgery and when I woke up in the recovery room there was a strange, dark looking bag hooked up to my IV. I asked the nurse what it was and she says, "oh, we all that the 'beef stew' ". I don't know what was really in it, but I realized then that there are some things about your health that you can't control. I'm pretty sure that all prescription medicines are tested on animals. Also, what if you were going to die and they said they could transplant a pigs organ into you and it would save your life. You would do it. It would be disturbing, but you wouldn't have much of a choice. In the end, you do the best you can.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top