As World Cancer Day approaches on February 41, we are reminded of friends and family who have fought the illness and think about what we might do to prevent cancer in the future. This includes for our four-legged family members. According to the National Cancer Institute, approximately six million dogs and will receive a cancer diagnosis this year in the US, making cancer the number one killer of dogs over the age of two.2 While these statistics are not comforting, it is reassuring to know that there are ways pet parents can help prevent cancer in their dogs and cats.
#1 - Avoid Chemicals in Pet Environment and Diet
Pet professionals offer many tips to help reduce the risk of cancer in pets. In a recent article, Nine Ways to Prevent Canine Cancer3, three veterinarians weighed in on the topic. The advice includes keeping your pet away from chemicals, like those found in traditional flea killers, or from herbicides and pesticides in lawn care products. Pet food is another common, even if surprising, source of potentially toxic chemicals. The authors recommended, “feeding your dog a healthy diet free from artificial preservatives, artificial flavors, and dyes.”
#2 - Avoid Synthetic Vitamins and Minerals in Pet Foods
Artificial ingredients are not the only chemicals found in pet foods. Chemically-synthesized vitamins and minerals are added to nearly all commercial pet foods, and these man-made nutrients often contain unwanted and potentially toxic ingredients4. Studies by the U.S. National Cancer Institute have shown a relationship between vitamin supplements and cancer in humans, and so the agency does not recommend them.
What most pet parents don’t realize is that pets are exposed to these same substances when they consume a pet food containing “added vitamins and minerals.” When consumers see this phrase on pet food labels, it tells them that the added vitamins and minerals are man-made, or chemically-synthesized. Whole foods are more natural sources of essential nutrients for pets.
#3 - Look for Whole Food Ingredients in Pet Foods
Whole foods provide pets with an abundance of naturally occurring nutrients: Proteins, vitamins, minerals, fiber, probiotics, enzymes, antioxidants, co-factors, phytonutrients, and more. Some of these nutrients found naturally in food are thought to help reduce the risk of some cancers. For example, antioxidants are substances that inhibit oxidation, reactions promoted by oxygen, peroxides, or free radicals. Free radicals can damage cells and may play a part in several diseases, including cancer. Here is a short list of antioxidants: beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, selenium, and Vitamins A, C and E.5
Whole food ingredients to look for that contain antioxidants, some studied specifically for their possible cancer-fighting properties, include:
▪Blueberry ▪Tomato ▪Alfalfa ▪Chicory ▪Almond▪Spinach ▪Cranberry ▪Parsley ▪Apple ▪Carrot
▪Broccoli ▪Artichoke ▪Kelp ▪Apricot
About Nature’s Logic
Nature’s Logic has formulated truly natural pet foods substantiated for all the life stages of dogs and cats. All essential vitamins and minerals in our formulas come from whole food and 100% natural ingredients. They are among the most natural and safest commercial pet foods on the market. For more information, visit www.natureslogic.com.
1. http://www.uicc.org/world-cancer-day-20122. http://www.kvoa.com/news/pet-vet-cancer-and-pets/
3. http://www.dogchannel.com/dog-health/article_cancer.aspx -