Friday, March 8, 2013

PESAH: Medicines and non-edible products

Sephardim are allowed to use or keep during Pesaḥ any product which is non-edible, i.e., unfit for human or animal consumption even if they might contain ḥameṣ.  For example: Cosmetics, glues, paint, colognes, perfumes, soaps, detergents or any other cleaning products, etc.  In all these cases there is neither a need to check for the absence of ḥameṣ, nor for any kind of Kosher for Pesaḥ certification. 
The consumption of medicines or vitamins in the form of capsules or non-chewable pills is permissible. When the medicine or vitamin  comes in the form of a hard swallowable pill, even if it would contain a ḥameṣ by-product it is considered "non-eatableḥameṣ" (eno ra-ui leakhilat keleb). However,  chewable pills, syrups, powder-drinks, supplements drinks and/or any other flavored and/or chewable medicines or vitamins, should be certified Kosher for Pesaḥ or one should make sure that they do not contain any ḥameṣ ingredient in their composition.  
Rabbi Eliezer Melamed explains that this is Halakhic criteria is followed also by  most Ashkenazi rabbis. He also clarifies that today virtually all pills are made with corn-starch and almost none with wheat-starch (because of celiac patients).  Therefore, one can use take during Pesaḥ any swallowable (non chewable) hard pill and there is not need to check its ingredients.  
It is advisable then, when possible, to ask the physician to prescribe for Pesaḥ the medication in the form of non-chewable pills. 
Needless to say that in the case of a serious medical condition any necessary medicine should be taken. 

Food that is suitable for animal consumption is forbidden to keep during Pesaḥ. If one has a pet, therefore, one should get food that does not contain any  ḥameṣ product.   Click here  to see the Star K list of pet products Kasher for Pesah. 

Shabbat Shalom!

Candle lighting in NYC    5.35 pm 

Shabbat ends in NYC:      6. 36 pm

Click here to watch "A band of migratory birds in Israel, simply AMAZING"

THE REAL ACTION STARTS AT 07:00 when a falcon attacks the flock.