Supplement Talk: This Week – Turmeric
Most people are familiar with Turmeric. You may even have some in your cupboard to cook with. When it comes to Western Medicine, Turmeric has had long known benefits for the body, inside and out. Here are some benefits of turmeric for pets: allergy relief, digestion support, stops diarrhea, contains antioxidants, weight management, detox, anti-inflammatory, pain relief, and more.
A POWERFUL ANTIOXIDANT:
Clinical studies have shown that curcumin in turmeric is a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals which cause the painful inflammation and damage to joints affected by arthritis. The anti-inflammatory properties, combined with the fact that turmeric is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, suggests that it’s also useful for disinfecting and treating skin injuries. Research suggests that when using it topically, mix it with raw honey (as raw honey has high antibacterial properties). Once you have applied this to your pet, you will have to keep an eye on him as the paste can turn out to be a tasty treat.
Turmeric is good for the health of your pet’s heart. Some pets are susceptible to blood clots and excess cholesterol. Turmeric has been found to lower LDL levels which support both heart and liver health.
In addition, turmeric helps to thin the blood, reducing the risk of deadly clots that can lead to strokes and heart attacks. It’s important not to thin your dog’s blood too much, but the right amount can be helpful. If your pet is on medication, especially those that thin the blood, check with your vet for the appropriate dosage.
Our pets are susceptible to toxins in the environment and in their food, especially commercially produced kibble and treats. The liver plays a significant role in removing toxins from the body. Curcumin is believed to stimulate bile production necessary for the digestion of fat in the liver. Active dogs need at least 20% fat in their diet; therefore, bile production is critical for good health. Turmeric boosts the liver’s ability to metabolize fat and remove waste from the body.
**As with any pre-existing condition, if your pet already suffers from liver disease, you should consult your vet before treating with turmeric as some studies indicate that turmeric may aggravate existing problems.
One of the most interesting discoveries I made while investigating the benefits of turmeric is that there are now reports coming out claiming that turmeric may help in the fight against cancer – even shrinking existing tumors! Antioxidant properties are also helpful in reducing the negative side effects of chemotherapy.
Turmeric is not the only thing you should do to prevent, control and/or treat cancer; however, it certainly has us excited about its anti-cancer properties.
Aids in the treatment of epilepsy
Helps in preventing the formation of cataracts
Heals stomach ailments, aids in digestive disorders, and reduces gas and bloating
Acts as a binding agent and therefore great for treating diarrhea (Make sure you have lots of water available for your pet to drink!)
Aids in fat metabolism and weight management
High in fiber and rich in vitamins and mineral
As per Dr. Karen Becker, “Consider giving cats about 100 milligrams twice a day. Small to medium-sized dogs can be given 250 milligrams twice a day, and large to giant breeds should get 500 milligrams two to three times a day.”
As with any supplement, I start small and work my way up to where I’m comfortable.
There are certain things to consider when buying a supplement for your pet.
Make sure it is of good quality and that there is enough turmeric in the product to be beneficial. Not all supplements are created equal.
Even though turmeric seems relatively safe, there can be some side effects. Here are some that were found in people: Stomach upset, dizziness and nausea to start; turmeric can also lead to worsening gallbladder problems, increased occurrence of bruising, decreased blood sugar, infertility, iron deficiency. Even though they were not common, do not overdose and give your pet a break from it from time-to-time.
Remember how turmeric is a bright orange color. Be careful and mix it in well with your pets’ food, because your pets might end up with an orange or red mustache!
Turmeric is a binding agent, so ensure that your pet has lots of water to reduce the likelihood of constipation.
If you have any concerns, please consult with your veterinarian first.
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