“Let food be thy medicine, and medicine by thy food” – Hippocrates
One of the more incredible things in western society, is how little attention we truly pay to the food that we fuel ourselves and our lives with every day. It is no different with our animals. What you choose to feed your pet on a daily basis is the single most important health choice you will make for your beloved furry family member. Price, appearance and good advertising betray us and our pet’s health more often than not.
The standard kibble is a good example. While convenient, common kibble is produced after several rounds of processing. An extremely high heat index is required in kibble processing, which leads to blanched nutrients, disfigured cell bonds and alterations of protein structures. To compensate for these missing nutrients and denatured components, manufacturers attempt to replace them by synthetic vitamins and supplements.
If you pour a cup of water on dry kibble it will puff up and absorb the water. When your pet eats regular dry kibble, the same process occurs in the digestive tract, except moisture is drawn out of your pet’s body and into the dry food. Consequently, most pets eating a dry kibble diet live in a constant state of low-grade dehydration and inflammation. This creates a set-up for chronic illness. Pet food companies have convinced the general public that feeding our pets whole foods (raw or home cooked) is harmful, when in fact, feeding our pets heavily processed dry food can lead to poor nutrition and poor health. Not all dog foods are created equal. If your pet is currently eating over-the-counter dry dog food, consider scheduling a dietary consultation with Dr. Macdonald today.
Using Food to Remedy Health Problems
Holistic veterinarians promoting proper nutrition will often recommend (from best to worst) a raw food diet, home-cooked meals, canned food, then select kibble. Combine these rankings with the TCVM theory that foods have specific energetic properties (such as warming and cooling or drying and moistening) and you begin to understand some of the concepts behind food therapy.
Food energetics identifies properties in foods that will have a positive effect on your pet’s health. For example, if your pet is experiencing excess body heat, Dr. Macdonald may recommend proteins, vegetables, and fruits with cooling properties to aid in balancing your pet’s temperature. If overhauling your pet’s diet is not an option, simply adding various supplemental foods or herbs could also have a positive effect.
Holistic veterinarians practicing food therapy are witnessing better overall pet health and often resolution of syndromes which would commonly call for prescription medications. This is an animal in Harmony.