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Paper Vs Plastic….

Paper Vs Plastic….

Packaging is a rapidly evolving field especially in ingestible markets. Besides keeping foods and supplements safe from contamination and retaining the nutritional properties and virility of the ingredients, packaging provides additional features that are important to us consumers. These include resealability, tamper evidence, and the display of product information, as well as reuse or recycling features.

When we first started making organic pet supplements, the containers that were available to us in our very small required quantity were food grade plastic, period. That never felt good to us as we did not like the idea of supplying Certified Organic herbal and superfood products in plastic containers, it just felt wrong. We definitely spend time researching many of the expressed health concerns regarding chemicals migrating from plastic packaging into food or supplements that come in contact with it and are not at all comfortable with the reported information. We do not store our own food or our dogs’ raw diet food in plastic but use glass or ceramic. So why put our pet supplements in them?

We spent nearly a year sourcing a paper tube that could be lined to add a moisture barrier, would be recyclable and from a sustainable source and not leach any toxins into our finished goods.

 Voila! We found the current canisters that we now use and have for the past 3.5 years in all our herbal powder blends that are additionally made to be shelf stable in retail store environments. These canisters are recyclable and use a much more sustainable material source.  We feel so much better!

     

To take this one step further, we’ve offered refill “sachets” (bags) that are made of recycled Kraft paper that are thermally sealed for repeat customers locally, eliminating the need for a new canister each time  a refill is needed. We are pleased to offer these same “sachets” for our online customers now as well! The bags provide a lower cost to ship due to much less packaging, creating an overall lesser footprint in use of materials, and they too can be easily recycled after use, a win-win. Simply dose from the bag that is zip locked for easy closing OR transfer the ingredients into your existing Pet Wellness Blends™ canister.

Our buckets are lined with a bag made from corn and are biodegradable.

 

Check out our supplements and thoughtful packaging www.petwellnessblends.com. Now that is forward thinking!

  • Joyce Belcher

A Heartfelt "Thank You" to Holistic-Integrative Veterinary Medicine

 

Last week we attended the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA) conference and trade show in Augusta, Ga. Our booth was lined with our Pet Wellness Blends Supplements and our Veterinary Botanicals herbal medicinals to showcase the unique formulas that we create to veterinarians from all over the country, and a few other countries as well.

               

We met many holistic and integrative vets and vet students, along with several conventional vets that attended to educate themselves with the scientific evidence based research and teachings that AHVMA filled the conference with for 4 days.

These veterinarians study hard and long, devoting themselves to higher education in their field of alternative medicine while helping animals all over the country live healthier lives. For this, we cannot thank you enough!  The number of holistic and integrative veterinarians is on the rise and much needed. It does our hearts a world of good knowing there are organizations such as AHVMA, VBMA and IHS to support and educate. 

The International Herbal Symposium (IHS) is another venue for herbal based education, open to all that want to learn that introduced the Vet Track a few years ago.  

One woman that really made an impact on me at the AHVMA conference last week, I had met earlier this year at IHS in Massachusetts.  She has practiced conventional veterinary medicine for about 30 years in Arkansas. There, she sat at the table where I was eating lunch with my vet and a few other holistic vets and told us her story which immediately had my head saying, never give up.  I'm guessing she's in her late 50's early 60's, and is now learning holistic veterinary medicine for the first time in her career!  She was overwhelmed with "where do I start," there's so much information and so much to learn.  We all said "one day at a time, you'll find your path with what clicks for you and off you'll be running with it."  

I had the pleasure of seeing her again last week at the AHVMA conference in Georgia and she was beaming with all of the new information she was learning, really taking it all in and with such grace and ease.  She told me that she would spend the rest of her career learning and practicing holistic medicine.  This was her quest.  And that..........was the highlight of the conference for me and what I took away.....Never Give up.  It's never too late to do the right thing, to learn, to teach and educate ourselves so that we can provide our pets with the best possible health that we can with the knowledge we gain, every day.

 

AHVMA  is an organization that started in 1982 with 32 members and hosts nearly 1,000 today.

If you're looking for a holistic veterinarian for your pets, there are hundreds listed on their site www.ahvma.org

 

 

 

  • Joyce Belcher

Immune System Balance

 

The primary role of the immune system is to defend the body against foreign invaders or abnormal cells that invade or attack it. The immune system functions in the same way in horses as it does in dogs, cats and humans.

When the immune system is out of balance, it can sometimes cause itchiness, fever, or swelling in the body to signal if there is something wrong. Just think of the immune system as a search and destroy system. It kills invading pathogens and antigens to prevent them from causing harm.

Most vaccines work by stimulating the development of specific immunity. Vaccinations have been developed for many diseases in animals as an effective way of enhancing the immune response to a specific invader.

However, overuse of vaccinations can create an imbalance in the immune system by overstimulation. When this happens, the animal can have an auto-immune reaction.

This can be true with constant use of “stimulating” herbs as well.

This brings us to: HOW can we balance our pets immune system?

If we constantly stimulate the immune system, it’s possible to can create an auto-immune reaction, especially if vaccines and various drugs are being used or the animal is in a stressful situation (physical as well as emotional stressors), all can affect the thymus.

But we don’t want to ignore the immune system hoping for the best by doing nothing.

So the short answer is BALANCE. The ideal combo platter for your pets immune system includes the use of Essential Fatty Acids, Pre and Probiotics, Phytonutrients that have specific immune modulating capabilities (Adaptogens) that contain a myriad of vitamin and minerals, creating total synergy for the immune system.

The base of our Wellness Blends, Canine, Feline and Equine are species selected Adaptogens, pre/probiotics and some essential fatty acids that are found in hemp seeds though dogs and cats should have added Omega 3’s, EPA and DHA.

What is an Adaptogen?

Definition by David Winston, RH, AHG

Nontoxic to its recipient

Produces a nonspecific response in the body

i.e., if the immune system is heightened, adaptogens can depress for balance. If depleted, can enhance.

Increases the power of resistance against multiple stressors including physical, chemical or biological agents.

Has a normalizing/balancing effect on the organs caused by stressors.

They help to counter chronic immune cell depletion and improve the body’s defenses by increasing the production of specialized cells.

Also help produce an increased secretion of cortisol in response to injury or infection

Have a direct effect on the nervous system, allowing for an improved mind-body connection.

They also offer an increased resistance to pathogens and infections by providing increased immunity.

Immune amphoteric: this is an immune modulator. An herb that can enhance or depress immune function or reduce overstimulated immune response to bring the body to a normal state.

Examples:

Ashwagandha-American Ginseng- Asian Ginseng -Cordyceps -Holy Basil-Licorice-Reishi-Eleuthero-Shilajit        

Immune stimulants: boost the immune system

Examples:

Astragalus, Lycium, and Schisandra and Cat’s Claw (to a certain degree)

Eleuthero root is one of my favorite adaptogens for all animals as well as humans. It increases energy, endurance, longevity, immunity, skin and muscle tone and bone strength making it a necessary herb for athletic or working dogs and horses. It prevents lactic acid build up while enhancing circulatory action and is especially good with older animals as it relieves stress and improves resistance to infections.

Recommended reading

Adaptogens by David Winston, RH, AHG

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Adam Jacobs

How can we bring balance to our pets immune system?

The primary role of the immune system is to defend the body against foreign invaders or abnormal cells that invade or attack it. The immune system functions in the same way in horses as it does in dogs, cats and humans.

When the immune system is out of balance, it can sometimes cause itchiness, fever, or swelling in the body to signal if there is something wrong. Just think of the immune system as a search and destroy system. It kills invading pathogens and antigens to prevent them from causing harm.

Most vaccines work by stimulating the development of specific immunity. Vaccinations have been developed for many diseases in animals as an effective way of enhancing the immune response to a specific invader.

However, overuse of vaccinations can create an imbalance in the immune system by over-stimulation. When this happens, the animal can have an auto-immune reaction. This can be true with the constant use of “stimulating” herbs as well.

If we constantly stimulate the immune system, it’s possible to can create an auto-immune reaction, especially if vaccines and various drugs are being used or the animal is in a stressful situation (physical as well as emotional stressors), all can affect the thymus.

But we don’t want to ignore the immune system hoping for the best by doing nothing.

This brings us to: HOW can we bring balance our pets immune system?

So the short answer is with immune modulators. The ideal combo platter for your pets immune system includes the use of Essential Fatty Acids, Pre and Probiotics, Phytonutrients that have specific immune modulating capabilities (Adaptogens) and contain a myriad of vitamin and minerals, creating total synergy for the immune system. This may sound complicated but a balanced formula can make your daily feeding regime easy and complete.

The base of our Wellness Blends, Canine, Feline and Equine are species selected Adaptogens, pre/probiotics and some essential fatty acids that are found in hemp seeds though dogs and cats should have added Omega 3’s, EPA and DHA.

What is an Adaptogen?

Definition by David Winston, RH, AHG

  • Nontoxic to its recipient
  • Produces a nonspecific response in the body
  • i.e., if the immune system is heightened, adaptogens can depress for balance. If depleted, can enhance.
  • Increases the power of resistance against multiple stressors including physical, chemical or biological agents.
  • Has a normalizing/balancing effect on the organs caused by stressors.
  • They help to counter chronic immune cell depletion and improve the body’s defenses by increasing the production of specialized cells.
  • Also help produce an increased secretion of cortisol in response to injury or infection
  • Have a direct effect on the nervous system, allowing for an improved mind-body connection.

They also offer an increased resistance to pathogens and infections by providing increased immunity.

Immune amphoteric: this is an immune modulator. An herb that can enhance or depress immune function or reduce overstimulated immune response to bring the body to a normal state.

Examples:

Ashwagandha-American Ginseng- Asian Ginseng -Cordyceps -Holy Basil-Licorice-Reishi-Eleuthero-Shilajit        

Immune stimulants: boost the immune system

Examples:

Astragalus, Lycium, and Schisandra and Cat’s Claw (to a certain degree)

 

  Eleuthero root is one of my favorite adaptogens for all animals as well as humans. It increases energy, endurance, longevity, immunity, skin and muscle tone and bone strength making it a necessary herb for athletic or working dogs and horses. It prevents lactic acid build up while enhancing circulatory action and is especially good with older animals as it relieves stress and improves resistance to infections.

Recommended reading

Adaptogens by David Winston, RH, AHG