Vegan Moral Dilemma: Is there a Vegan Alternative to Donkey-Hide Gelatin (Ejiao)?

Vegan Moral Dilemma: Is there a Vegan Alternative to Donkey-Hide Gelatin (Ejiao)?

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For those of you that don’t know me, my name is Ted and
I am Yoga Trapeze®, Inferno Hot Pilates®, Balanced Body® Reformer
& YMCA Awards Level 3 Mat Pilates, Nutrition & Yoga Instructor.
I’m also a Fashion & Fitness Photographer.
Here’s my Linktree™ to my website and my social media accounts:
linktr.ee/icefirefitness

Hello Friends!

As many of you know, I’ve only just started my Vegan journey recently. 
In fact, today is Day 113 of my Vegan/Vegetarian diet.

As I discovered, being Vegan is much more than just eating a plant-based diet (if you so choose).
In fact, the definition of Veganism by “The Vegan Society” is this:
“Veganism is a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of animals, humans and the environment.
In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals
.”

Which…brings me to today’s topic: (which is incidentally only my 2nd blogpost since starting this Blog) –
“Is there a Vegan Alternative to Donkey-Hide Gelatin?”

I help my Dad exercise everyday, and this morning he remarked that his left knee was much weaker than his right.

I told him that my left knee was also not that strong from having torn my MCL (medial collateral ligament), my ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and my meniscus cartilage.

He started telling me about something he’d read about called Donkey-Hide Gelatin (a.k.a. Ass-Hide Glue) which is supposedly very good for strengthening knee joints, as well as treating bleeding, dizziness, insomnia and a dry cough.

Knowing that my Dad is not about to become a Vegan at his age (although to be fair, his mind is very open, and he has willingly tried ALL my Vegan cooking efforts so far 😊), I stated that Oxtail is well renowned for its bone and joint health benefits.

He acknowledged that he had heard that too, but he had read that Donkey-Hide Gelatin was much more potent.

I told him I would look into it.

What I’ve found out so far is shocking and also heart-breaking.

To cut a long story short, Donkey-Hide Gelatin is mainly used for medicinal purposes and it is made by boiling donkey skins to produce gelatin, which is then dried and ground into a powder for later use.

The trouble is, unlike wool which is sustainable, natural, renewable, biodegradable and recyclable (and now has traceability standards and animal welfare standards to track its production), Donkey-Hide Gelatin can only be produced from dead donkeys.

For me, knowing that, was enough to stop me researching any further, but not to be ignorant, I carried on reading and found out that something like 4 million donkeys are slaughtered each year just to accommodate China’s domestic market.

This figure was shocking and it reminds me of a recent topic in the news about sharks and how up to 500,000 of them could be killed for their livers, which contains a natural oil called Squalene, used in most of the COVID-19 vaccines currently on trial.

Whether you’re a Vegan or not, if you knew that the COVID-19 vaccine/cure derived from animals, would you have the vaccine?  
If a loved one was in a life or death situation but you knew that millions of animals were slaughtered to produce the “antidote” that could cure them, would you be okay with that?

I think it is very difficult to prove the effectiveness of  animal-based medicines (heck, they can’t even prove that vitamin supplements are 100% effective) and so even before embarking on my Vegan journey, I’ve been naturally cynical when friends and family have suggested drinking pills, potions, pills, soups and tonics made from animal organs and parts.

As I mentioned in my previous blogpost, as soon as I started my Vegan journey, I replaced two supplements I’ve been taking for years – Glucosamine Sulphate for my genetic Osteoarthritis (derived from shell fish, which I have now replaced with a Glucosamine Hydrochloride) and Cod Liver Oil for my brain (which I initially replaced with Algal Oil but have now replaced with Flaxseed oil instead).

Like with anything in life, there is almost always an alternative you can take – an alternative route, an alternative job, an alternative place to live, an alternative meal, an alternative lifestyle and yes, an alternative medicine – you just need to do a little bit of research and talk to a few people, and sometimes wait for the answers/solutions to present themselves.

Whilst I’ve had an Instagram and Facebook account for quite some time, and I don’t really care whether anyone reads/looks at my posts, I would really appreciate some advice and guidance from The Vegan Community and also from others much wiser and knowledgeable than me in these matters, as I really would like to find out some REAL and effective natural remedies for painful/weak knees, since both my Dad and I (and many, many others) suffer from this condition.

Here’s hoping someone out there has some really good alternatives/cures/remedies I’ve not come across yet, as I really enjoy learning about the many alternatives on my Vegan journey.

Life is full of choices.
We just need to make the best choices for ourselves that we can live with comfortably and ethically.

“The three Cs in life: Choice, Chance & Change.
You must make the Choice to take the Chance if you want anything in life to Change.”

Love & Light,
Ted

Ted

My name is Ted and I am Yoga Trapeze®, Inferno Hot Pilates®, Balanced Body® Reformer & YMCA Awards Level 3 Mat Pilates, Nutrition & Yoga Instructor. I’m also a Fashion & Fitness Photographer. Here’s my Linktree™ to my website and my social media accounts: linktr.ee/icefirefitness

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Lucy

    Another interesting article! 🙋‍♀️🙏

    1. Ted

      Awww! Thanks Luce! Hope you’re well! Can’t wait to write about you and the million things you do soon! 😘

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