Animal testing, lactose, and gecko—I wanna new drug, one that won’t make me sick…


So I’ve been faithfully taking these pills that the acupuncturist gave me this morning for my lungs. They are a Chinese herbal preparation—or so I thought. Until I happened to look at the Ping Chuan Pian ingredients, which clearly list:

  • apricot seed
  • morus
  • codonopsis
  • licorice
  • cynanchum
  • cordyceps
  • gecko
  • citrus
  • lapis
Yes, you read that right: Gecko. I have consumed Gecko. In fact, I took this “Chinese Herbal Food Combination” for weeks last winter as well. WTF? I guess I thought it was some kind of gecko plant. I don’t know what made me notice it today and then search the interwebs, but from everything I can find, it is definitely not a plant: Note this site calls it an herb and then goes on to call it a drug: “The drug is captured in summer, removed from the viscera, wiped, opened with bamboo piece to make the whole body flattened and straight, and dried at a low temperature.” Another site had a picture of a gecko flattened in this manner. Hello, this was a living being, not an herb or a drug, no matter what you do with it after you kill it.

Definitely not vegan.

So I’m not taking an asthma pharmaceutical because it’s tested on animals, has lactose in it, and is potentially harmful to my health, and now I’m not going to take this not-so-herbal preparation because it has geckos in it. I am going to keep my albuterol inhaler on hand for urgent situations, even though albuterol was likely tested on animals as well. But I’m going to keep looking for alternatives.

I wanna new drug, one that won’t make me sick (in more ways than one).