Health and Diet

Increasingly animal companions are being diagnosed with the same illnesses that their human owners are struggling with. This is not without reason. The environmental stresses as well as the commercial foods many pets eat, even the tap water affects their health as seriously as the prepackaged foods people buy for themselves affect them. As a result allergies, diabetes, kidney problems, arthritis, lethargy, heart and liver problems, cancer, anxiety, fearfulness and other illnesses occur at an increasing rate. These are health problems that were not seen at the same rate 20 to 30 years ago. If you use as an example type 2 or adult onset diabetes, excess weight and heart disease in humans, diet and lifestyle issues are tightly connected to it. These illnesses once diagnosed often necessitate the use of medications. This is true with humans as well as pets.

In a human population, if one again takes diabetes as an example; when meaningful changes are made with regards to smoking, weightloss, use of foods low on the Glycemic scale, increase in fiber and good fats decrease in bad fats and an increased level of physical activity there is a significant decrease in occurrence of diabetes in that population. Diet and physical activity is a therefore a critical component in treatment which in many cases can be effective on its own.

In the case of our companion animals, veterinarians also recommend meaningful dietary changes, appropriate organic foods for dogs and cats. Similarly animals need regular daily physical activity as well as activities to relieve boredom and stress to stay healthy. I would add to this, give your pet fresh filtered or spring water instead of tap water. Our pets have one advantage over the human animal when trying to maintain weight; somebody else controls the refrigerator and cupboard doors.

While I was studying Chinese Herbal Medicine my teachers, Michael Tierra L.Ac. and Leslie Tierra L.Ac., had a favorite saying; “one can pay up front or pay later”, meaning of course that one can either pay up front for healthy, appropriate organic and pastured foods, clean water, increased physical exercise and stress relieving practices or pay for illnesses later. While no one can guarantee health, and medication may indeed become necessary at some point, healthy foods and lifestyle practices go a long way to maintaining physical and mental health for all animals, two or four footed.

Date: Wednesday, 10. February 2010 8:37
Trackback: Trackback-URL Category: Nutrition, Pet Wellness

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