Original post: September 16, 2010
The unfortunate result of joint degeneration is a general decline in the very physical activity that`s crucial for health, fitness and longevity. As soon as the physical exercise is no longer tolerable, biological age begins to accelerate and your pet’s health falls apart at an exponential rate – faster than yours can. The key to long term health is exercise coupled to complete live nutrition.
Research today is confirming that the underlying cause of joint degeneration as we and our companion animals age, is the slow decline in activity of the chondrocyte. The chondrocyte is the cell responsible for using glucosamine to build collagen for cartilage reconstruction. If this worker cell of the body is not functional, even shovelfuls of oral glucosamine won’t result in new cartilage tissue. The supplement may deliver a mild anti-inflammatory effect but this only frees our companions from pain getting them active enough to run around wearing off more cartilage tissue in an already damaged joint.
Research demonstrates that many nutrients literally work as gene modulators and their absence or limitation ultimately leads to gene misfire. Vitamin C’s role in joint construction and repair, for example, is now known to involve gene activation of this cartilage-producing cell. You may have already known this, but unlike your own body, your dog’s body can actually manufacture vitamin C. Although supplemental C is not as important for your canine, it is very important for a convalescing or extremely active dog. As physical and metabolic activity increase, vitamin C demands also increase and can do so beyond the body’s capacity to keep up with vitamin C synthesis. Your active dog will need the right amount and the right type of vitamin C in his diet.
Grape seed and green tea extracts further support the activity of vitamin C. The direct physical wear caused by exercise is not the cause of joint degeneration. The cause is the declining activity of the worker cell preventing it from keeping up with the tissue wear. This decline is advanced by oxidation. Physical work can contribute to oxidation. Antioxidants, like vitamin C, grape seed extract and green tea extract, neutralize this damaging oxidation. Processed foods are not only usually compromised of antioxidant nutrition; these cardboard bagged and canned foods can also supply damaged nutrients that contribute to oxidation. Chondrocyte activity and the body’s ability to use glucosamine are significantly compromised by this oxidation.
The key to long term health is proactive nutrition. By supplementing the diet with connective tissue-specific antioxidants that protect the worker cells from the rigors of oxidation, we allow the maintenance cells to do their job daily and keep up with the repair. Natural aging is another development that contributes to uncontrolled oxidation. We all know that with the advancement of age joint health tends to decline but what most of us don’t know about this age factor is how it contributes to the degeneration. As we and our pets age, our natural production of internal antioxidants declines and with this reduction our natural protection from free radicals (oxidation) declines. This is the oxidative factor that interferes with that joint tissue worker cell.
Excessive physical work, age and processed damaged nutrition can add up to an overwhelming strain on the metabolism. Biologically active nutrition through supplementation is a monumental countermeasure.
The processed bagged food we have commonly accepted as our companion canine`s staple cannot deliver all of these needs in an active form. Antioxidants and polyunsaturated fatty acids are often added to these foods but they cannot survive the processing or long term shelf storage. Chondroitin and glucosamine are also often added to pet foods but the quantity and form may not be good enough.
Chondroitin plays a huge role in joint maintenance but the molecular form is important. In the past we thought chondroitin performed as a dense supply of glucosamine. Now we know it delivers its own pharmacological activity; it literally frees the genes of the chondrocyte involved in collagen synthesis from inhibitory factors such as elevated nitric oxide and peroxy nitrite (free radical/oxidation). Chondroitin literally teams up with the other antioxidants to allow the cells to use glucosamine for cartilage tissue regeneration.
But not all chondroitin is the same. The key to its specialized activity is its molecular weight or more simply, the size of the chondroitin molecule. Low molecular weight (smaller bits of the compound) varieties can seep in to the worker cells to activate the cartilage-building process. Crude forms often found in food cannot deliver the same activation.
The right types and combinations of these nutrients present potency at the level of nutrient-based medicine. Not only do they help regenerate new tissue, they deliver potent safe and natural anti-inflammatory and pain relief. Most importantly, they can be used daily long before disease is apparent to prevent premature joint wear. And this is crucial if your canine training partner is as active as you are because if you think he is, he’s more likely to be twice as active as you are.
A formula properly designed for your dog empowers the body to be self-sufficient and do what it was designed to do – prevent disease and maintain health. It allows your canine training partner to stick with the lifestyle program that will keep you both in peak physical and mental health well into those senior years. Joint health will ultimately be the limiting factor when it comes to the elixir of life – exercise. Prevention is the best solution but glucosamine on its own can’t cut it. And if disease is creeping in already, it’s especially important to get with the properly designed joint activator to stop and reverse it as soon as possible. You’re in charge; so take charge!