Blogging About Critters Since 2007

Monday, December 31, 2007

Health Food Trend Increases Animal Testing

It's damned if you do and damned if you don't. In this case, even eating "healthy" can cause animal suffering...although I'm not sure these "superfoods" and supplements are necessarily healthy. Sounds like they are just some marketing ploy to make more profits.

Eat some vegetables instead!

The demand for new health foods [in the UK} has led to a large increase in the number of experiments carried out on animals in the past year, Government figures show.

According to Home Office figures, the number of laboratory tests on live animals in this area of research jumped by 368 per cent from 862 in 2005 to 4,038 last year.

Animal welfare groups say many of the food additive tests are unnecessary and blame the increase on the demand for "superfoods", such as probiotic yoghurt drinks and dietary supplements.

Researchers at the University of Glasgow fed raspberry juice to rats and killed them to study where the juice went in their liver, kidney and brains. A fish supplement for "intestinal health" was tested on rats at the Hammersmith Hospital.

The animals' guts were injured before tubes were forced down their throats to administer the supplement. They were later injected with a chemical to cause their guts to swell before being killed.

In a test to see if the food supplement gingko biloba could lessen pain, scientists at Glasgow Caledonian University injected rats in their paws and then cut them...

"People are unaware of the animal suffering that goes on behind the latest headlines about this new youth-giving fruit or that wonder supplement."

The Home Office figures for 2006 also show a four per cent rise in the total number of animal experiments, to more than three million.

It just makes me sick. How "necessary" are these tests? And is animal testing the only option?

Same old questions with no real answers in sight.

Photo by jepoirrier.

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