Just because it is all-natural does not necessarily make a product ”wholistic.” When we extract a vitamin or isolated ingredient from a food (or create it synthetically), how do we know that we have extracted all the components in the food that Nature dictated are needed to promote optimum health? What ingredients might that food contain that we need for health but have not yet discovered? Scientists are now discovering a wealth of phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables that promote health and are different from the vitamins and minerals previously discovered. More importantly, is it safe to take these isolated supplements in a pill rather than as part of the food they naturally occur in? Or could there be side effects from taking them in a way that is not natural to our body? Did you know these supplements have possible side effects?
- Glucosamine can affect insulin sensitivity, glucose tolerance, increase blood sugar disorders, increase candida infections and liver toxicity
- Long-term research shows colostrum could increase reproductive organ cancer
- Giving to your pet digestive enzymes is NOT holistic and actually short circuits the body’s natural ability to produce its own enzymes and leaves a lazy pancreas
- Early infant multivitamin supplementation is associated with increased risk for food allergies and asthma
Here is an example of the difference between taking supplements and whole food nutrition. Europeans in the 17th century avoided scurvy when crossing the Atlantic by drinking fresh lime juice loaded with Vitamin C. What is not commonly known is that by just taking a Vitamin C supplement (pure ascorbic acid) one could temporarily stop the symptoms of scurvy but the disease would come back once the Vitamin C supplement was stopped. But by taking Vitamin C made from an extract of whole green peppers, not only did the symptoms go away but the scurvy was cured. Vitamin C works better when all the ingredients (e.g., rutin, bioflavonoids, zinc, selenium, Vitamin E) that Nature put in whole foods are included. Holistic options should activate the body’s own natural ability to heal and not make the patient dependent on supplements forever.
Let us look at giving digestive enzymes to your pet from a holistic perspective. If the body needs more enzymes, the stomach sends a signal to the pancreas to produce more digestive enzymes. In a healthy body, the brain responds by increasing the signal to produce more enzymes and sends the proper nutrients, co-factors and co-enzymes to the pancreas for increased enzyme production. In an imbalanced or unhealthy body, either the signal from the brain, the nutrients or co-enzymes are missing. So, if we supply external digestive enzymes the stomach now sends the signal to the brain that everything is fine and the pancreas stops trying to manufacture more enzymes. In essence, by giving external digestive enzymes to our pet we have left a lazy pancreas, must increase the dosage of enzymes with age and our pet is dependent on this natural supplement for life.
Using whole food products with our pets are safer and more “wholistic” than using isolated supplements, which just address symptoms. Consider these final words from these prestigious sources on human nutrition that almost certainly applies to our animals as well:
- To reduce cancer risk, the best advice presently is to consume antioxidants through food sources, rather than supplements. (American Cancer Society)
- “…there are insufficient data to justify an alteration in public health policy from one that emphasizes food and diet to one that emphasizes nutrient supplements. (Journal of the American Medical Association)