Viagra gets OK for Passover

April 14, 2005 at 5:20 PM
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JERUSALEM, April 14 (UPI) -- A leading Israeli rabbi has reversed a previous ban and says it's OK for Jewish men to take Viagra on Passover.

Viagra had been deemed not kosher since 1998 under strict dietary laws over the week-long Jewish spring holiday. But, Rabbi Mordechai Eliahu says the pill can be swallowed if it is encased in a special soluble kosher capsule first.

Viagra's Israeli manufacturers said they sought an answer after receiving queries from worried religious men, the BBC reported.

The drug was previously prohibited because its coating was considered inedible over Passover, when contact with everyday ingredients, known as hametz, is forbidden under Jewish law.

According to the Jerusalem Post newspaper, Rabbi Eliahu, a former chief rabbi, said men can take Viagra if they purchase special capsules made from kosher gelatin in which to put the pill before the holiday starts.

Passover begins at sundown Saturday, April 23.

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