Community: Forum: Health & Healing

Vegan Health & Nutrition Discussion Forum

TL/DR: I'm an asthmatic and have been vegan for half my life. I recently discovered my medicines contain a milk protein. I'm upset with myself and ashamed.

I was diagnosed with asthma when I was 5 and back then I would occasionally get asthma attacks so it was pretty serious. By the time I was 25 my asthma was more controlled so I was given different medication - Advair Diskus and Singulair. I stayed on those for ten years, up until two weeks ago, when my doctor discovered my asthma was under even more control. He changed my medicine again, this time to FloVent. And I should mention I've been vegan since 18 (I'm now 35).

For two weeks I haven't taken the Advair, by my doctors orders, while I waited for the FloVent to come in. And I felt fine without it. Then the FloVent came and right on the box it listed Lactose Monohydrate as an ingredient. Now, I'm familiar with that ingredient because when I was shopping for a new seasonal allergy med it was in most things.

My doctor knows I'm vegan and he himself is vegetarian so I was pretty upset when I saw this med he prescribed had a milk ingredient. Then I looked up Advair -- same manufacturer as FloVent, same lactose monohydrate ingredient. Oh and Singulair has the same ingredient as well.

So basically I had been consuming milk, unbeknownst to me, for at least ten years. I felt like I got punched in the face and I started tearing up. Just the thought of all those cows in all those factory farms, their utters hooked up to tubes, their bodies tricked into pregnancy to force milking. They are sexually assaulted and abused so people can put their milk on their Cinnamon Toast Crunch. And now the realization that I was a part of this - that without my knowledge, I have been contributing to their suffering. It was just too much for to handle at that moment.

***NOTE: its already hard enough for me to deal with the fact that these medicines are tested on animals. Not a second goes by when I'm not thinking about how some animal in a laboratory is getting forced to take my asthma med to see potential side effects. And it upsets me so much but I've been led to believe for so long that I need these meds.

I guess I'm writing to let people know to check their meds' ingredients but mostly to vent. I don't know why I never checked earlier. I feel so stupid and ashamed.

I called my doctor to see if there's something else I can be switched to and I'm waiting to hear back from a nurse. But at this point, I really feel like I want to stop taking anything though. I feel fine. I'm able to run a couple miles every day and I haven't had an asthma attack since I was a kid.

I have to keep telling myself that we learn from our mistakes. I just wish I learned the truth sooner.

Have a great day everybody.

- Jason

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