Original post: September 16, 2010
Most of us have accepted the dry processed kibble diet to provide the foundation of our pet’s nourishment but this processed nourishment cannot meet nutritional needs. Processed canned wet foods and dry bagged kibble are primarily designed for our own convenience not the wellbeing of our pets. A body and metabolism built on these damaged building blocks is compromised and vulnerable to immune system deficiency and cognitive and emotional instability. Nourishing your puppy with fresh active nutrition will set the foundation for long lived quality of life.
Fatty acids are important nutritional foundation essentials. Polyunsaturated fatty acids are easily destroyed during processing and storage of feeds and they are critical for membrane health, hormone efficiency and general metabolic wellness. It’s interesting to note that fatty acid supplements such as salmon oils and flaxseed oils have become popular remedies for skin and coat ailments. The recovery they induce is not a function of a mysterious drug-like activity. The fact that these fats are so easily destroyed during processing and shelf storage is the reason they are likely limited in the diet. How can dry processed foods deliver live, biologically active fats? It’s not possible.
Supplementing these foods with a fresh, active supply of the fats simply provides the body with natural tools it needs to maintain health.
Pet food manufacturers are now beginning to add back polyunsaturated fats to their feeds such as DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) because research shows these are critical components needed for healthy neurological development. Deficiencies result in compromised cognitive and emotional development and limited life potential. EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) is another of these specialized omega-3 fats which is more apt to helping the body control inflammation and cardiovascular health self-sufficiently when it is supplemented. Here again, the positive health benefit of the supplement is a result of the body getting the fatty acid requirements it needs to balance cellular chemistry and thus produce hormone and metabolic balance. But these fats are so vulnerable to oxidation that fortification of the feed is not viable. They oxidize long before your precious pet can consume the benefit.
Supplementation of the feed each day with fresh biologically active fatty acids is the solution. However, these omega-3 fats cannot deliver maximum health benefits unless they are accompanied by the right essential fatty acid, linoleic acid. Fatty acid supplements designed for humans are not the best fit for dogs or cats. The canine and feline metabolisms require different essentials than humans. Dogs, for example, need the omega-6 fatty acid, linoleic acid, essentially and can convert this into the omega-3 fat alpha linolenic. Humans, on the other hand need both the linoleic and alpha linolenic acids as essentials in the diet. Although a human-intended fatty acid supplement can deliver immediate improvement in health in these animals the long term effect will be an imbalance in the other direction if the human fatty acid supplement is continued ongoing in our pets.
A properly proportioned fat supplement providing essential fatty acids and omega-3 conditionally essential fats can be added to the diet of choice to improve the health potential of your animal companion and preserve youth and quality of life. Wellness is a function of emotional, cognitive and physical health. If anyone of these elements is thrown offline, general health will begin to decline. Our pets’ emotional-cognitive-physical triangle is maintained in prime form by foundation nutrition. Foundation nutrition is made up of two categories: a multiple fatty acid complex blended into a species-specific proportion of omega-3 to omega-6 fats. The nutritional foundation cannot be complete without the complement of the natural cofactors required by the body to handle these important fatty acids within the cells. This subsequent essential nutrient requirement leads us to another category of nutrition which is also commonly damaged and limited in the processed diet- vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin and mineral cofactors make up an important part of that nutritional foundation. Long-lived self-regulation of health is only possible when all the vitamins and mineral co-factors for enzyme function are provided abundantly and regularly in the diet. The cofactor vitamins and minerals are used by the cells to guide the fats down the right metabolic path. These nutritional cofactors also afford the cell potent antioxidant protection to help preserve the fats in the body. The level of toxicity that we’re exposed to today did not exist one hundred years ago. This unnatural level of oxidation needs to be met in the body by a higher than normal antioxidant protection which the body cannot produce on its own. Your pet is naked and vulnerable without a proper antioxidant shield.
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The nutritional foundation program for your companion animal consists of two elements:
1) a proper fatty acid complex composed of cold pressed organic flaxseed and olive oils combined accurately with a blend of cold water fish oils; 2) a comprehensive mix of the right essential vitamins, minerals and phytoantioxidants to escort and protect the fats.
When should the foundation nutrients be supplied abundantly? All these essential nutrients must be supplied abundantly throughout life and are most critically needed in the early stages such as foetal development and puppyhood. They are also important dietary factors in senior years. In the early stages of foetal development when the neural network begins to develop demand for these specialized fatty acid building blocks is high. Abundant administration of these fats to the pregnant bitch is critical. The same is so for humans.
The expecting mother must eat foods which are high in these fats such as cold water fish. For maximum insurance, supplementation with undenatured sources such as carefully prepared and preserved supplements is recommended. . In fact, it is important to even pre-saturate the bitch with these specialized fats for several months before conception. Interestingly, the foetal developmental needs can be extracted from mom’s body to ensure DHA and other needed nutrients make it at requisite levels into the foetus. Some littermates may receive fewer building blocks if mother’s tissue supply and diet are both limited. Presaturation by supplementing long before a planned breeding is great insurance.
Natural processing by mother’s cells produces forms of these fats that are easy to incorporate into the neural network and the rest of the cells of the developing foetus. Suckling puppies will also get a healthy supply of these precious fats from breast milk thus supplementing the lactating female is important. Some littermates may receive fewer building blocks if mother’s tissue supply and diet are both limited. Milk quality can also be limited if pre-saturation with these fats is insufficient. Supplementation of the bitch’s feed must continue during breast feeding. And when the time is right, the feed of the weanlings must be chosen carefully and then supplemented with these fats and vitamins to maximize the animal’s potential in life.
Raising nutrient density of the diet with the nutritional foundation empowers the genetic systems built into all of our pets to maintain health and support vigor and zest. Not only have I applied these strategies with tremendous success in my healthy vigorous canines, which by the way, are twelve and thirteen years of age, I also apply this health insurance to support my children’s health in much the same way.