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Posts Tagged ‘PETA’

Most people dare not think past the colour of their lipstick ~ but beyond your bright fuchsia or gloss-and-glitter might lie a hidden ingredient on every vegan’s list of keepaways. The article entitled Are Cow Brains Lurking in your Lipstick? illuminates the ill-practices of some makeup companies that we should all be aware of. So let’s get down and dirty with our knowledge of cosmetics.

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“You’re probably thinking, “I hope not!”—but how can you be sure? The Food and Drug Administration recently told cosmetics makers to stop using the brains and spinal cord tissue from older cows in products like lipstick and hair spray in order to try to prevent the spread of mad cow disease to humans. Ready for the bad news? These same icky ingredients are “OK” if they come from cows younger than 30 months of age.

Cosmetics companies use animal ingredients such as tissue and tallow (fat) because they’re cheap, not because they’re better than plant-based or synthetic ingredients. Slaughterhouses kill billions of animals every year and have to dispose of the “byproducts” somehow; selling them to cosmetics manufacturers is one easy solution.

Unfortunately, even avid label-readers can’t always determine what they’re putting on—and in—their bodies. There are thousands of technical and patented names for ingredient variations, and many ingredients known by one name can be of animal, vegetable, or synthetic origin. And if that’s not confusing enough, some companies have slyly removed the word “animal”from their labels in order to avoid turning off consumers. For example, instead of saying “hydrolyzed animal protein,” companies may use a term like “hydrolyzed collagen.” Want to know more? Read PETA’s factsheet about hidden animal ingredients.

Now for Some Good News
Dozens of companies make lipsticks, shampoos, soaps, body scrubs, lotions, and other beauty potions without using slaughterhouse byproducts, milk and egg byproducts, sheep lanolin, honey, or beeswax. For a comprehensive list, click here; companies marked with an asterisk manufacture strictly vegan products. Look for these brands in your local natural foods stores, or order them online from Pangea or Vegan Essentials.

Many cruelty-free companies that are not entirely vegan do have a wide range of vegan products—including Arbonne International, Bath and Body Works, Beauty Without Cruelty, The Body Shop, Ecco Bella, Kiss My Face, and Origins. You can help put even more vegan products on store shelves by asking your favorite brands to use only humane, animal-free ingredients. (For contact information, see our list of companies that don’t test on animals.)

Buying cruelty-free is just one way to be a caring consumer. For more ideas, click here. To make a donation to PETA, click here. Your support is the single most important factor in strengthening our ability to save animal lives and go after companies that still test their products on animals.”

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Currently marketed as “does a body good” and one of the main sources of calcium on the food guide pyramid, milk is not the guiltless white savior it is made out to be. Dr. Kradjian, from the Seton Medical Center, reviewed over 500 relevant articles about the health benefits of milk – which turned out not to be many. He said of the reports “They were only slightly less than horrifying. … The main focus of the published reports seems to be on intestinal colic, intestinal irritation, intestinal bleeding, anemia, allergic reactions in infants and children as well as infections such as salmonella. Contamination of milk by blood and white (pus) cells as well as a variety of chemicals and insecticides was also discussed.”

Unfortunately, authorities only test for four of the 82 drugs in dairy cows. The Food and Drug Administration does not protect the public… because they are the ones failing to insure safe standards. An unbiased study was done by The Centre for Science in the Public Interest and they found 38% of milk samples in ten cities were contaminated with drugs. When the FDA used the same standards, 51% showed traces of drugs and antibiotics. The other ingredients that come with cow’s milk are penicillin used to treat udder diseases, pesticides, genetically-engineered bovine growth hormone, pus, cow hormones, and blood. Kradjian notes, “You may be horrified to learn that the USDA allows milk to contain from one to one and a half million white blood cells per milliliter.”

These shocking statistics beg the question to every mother: would you feed cow’s milk to your child? The milk of every species of mammal is unique and specifically tailored to the requirements of that animal. Cow’s milk, for example, has three to four times as much protein as a human mother’s milk. It is six to ten times more deficient in essential fatty acids as a mother’s milk, especially linoleic acid of which skimmed milk has none. Babies need a certain formula, which is pure mother’s milk, to reach full neurological and nervous potential. If not, it can have dire consequences for a baby like neurological disease, childhood diabetes, and even lower intelligence. Kradjian states that “Clearly, our specialization is for advanced neurological development and delicate neuromuscular control. We do not have much need of massive skeletal growth or huge muscle groups as does a calf.” Babies are not the same as baby cows, who need their mother’s milk to grow into adolescence at 545 kilos!

Benjamin Spock, perhaps the best-known pediatrician in history told the world what he thought about human consumption of milk. “I want to pass on the word to parents that cows’ milk from the carton has definite faults for some babies. Human milk is the right one for babies. A study comparing the incidence of allergy and colic in the breast-fed infants of omnivorous and vegan mothers would be important. I haven’t found such a study; it would be both important and inexpensive. And it will probably never be done. There is simply no academic or economic profit involved.” For all the indication that milk does not “do a body good”, scientists like Kradjian are speaking out about the downfalls. In closing, he says “Most of the people on this planet live very healthfully without cows’ milk. You can too. It will be difficult to change; we’ve been conditioned since childhood to think of milk as “nature’s most perfect food.” I’ll guarantee you that it will be safe, improve your health and it won’t cost anything. What can you lose?”

Read: Kradjian’s Article.

Read: What the Guardian thinks about Dairy.

Read: My personal favorite!

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