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A DOG, VITAMIN C AND YOU

 

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A dog, vitamin C and you

 

I had a really cool dog for almost 13 years of my life. He was a crossbreed of an Italian Greyhound and a Whippet. He was a little powerhouse – 22 pounds of pure, solid muscle and he could outrun a full-grown Doberman when he was just a puppy. 

 

His name was Tipper, but family would call him by his nickname, “Man in a Fur Coat.”  He would actually respond to that, and it was hilarious! I would often take my furry little guy on evening runs on trails around my neighborhood. I was always so impressed not only by his endurance, but his speed. My average-paced run was a quick walk for him. He was always such a good running partner and would look back at me with his million dollar smile. It was easy to see how he enjoyed that time with me, and I still cherish those memories now that he’s gone. 

 

I loved taking care of Tipper and always made sure he had organic dog food and filtered water. I kept up with the latest education and insights on his health to give him the best quality life possible. One night, when I was reading some important information about dogs and vitamin C, I found that dogs actually synthesize the vitamin in their liver by using trace minerals from their diet. 

 

That fact is so amazing because, as humans, we can’t manufacture vitamin C on our own and must obtain it through our diets or supplements. Today, it seems most of us aren’t getting enough of any nutrients that are needed to fight major illnesses, or even the common cold. 

(Picture is of “Man in a Fur Coat.”)

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Vitamin C: The immune booster

 

As I’ve mentioned, part of my business is therapeutic massage for my clients, so I come into contact with many germs daily and have a lot of free radical damage to my tissues from working out. In the last few years, I increased my vitamin C intake and noticed several differences in my skin and performance at the gym.

 

My parents always preached the need to take in more vitamin C, especially around cold season. An overall immune booster, this major antioxidant is needed for adrenal gland function, tissue growth and repair, collagen formation and helps heal bruises and wounds. It’s a major helper in the production of an anti-stress hormone, protects against infections and free radical damage from the environment, and can help absorb iron as well as increase your metabolism. 

 

Since we must get vitamin C from our foods and vitamins, it’s unfortunate that a lot of vitamin C taken in by diet is lost through urine. Also, stress, alcohol, birth control, antidepressants and smoking can deplete the body of vitamin C. So how can we step up our intake?  

 

Below, I made a list of some foods you can pick up that are loaded in vitamin C. While I’m a big supporter of getting all your nutrients from food, I support one supplement company that’s organic and GMO free – Garden Of Life/Vitamin Code (also raw). A water soluble vitamin, vitamin C should be taken after meals. If you’re taking high doses, it’s better to break them up in increments throughout the day and you shouldn’t take the vitamin along with aspirin, it can lead to stomach ulcers.

 

If you have questions on how, when and how much vitamin c to take, you can check with your local health food store and vitamin shop – sometimes they have staff that’s experienced in nutrition. If you’re unable to find whole foods organic vitamins near you, you can purchase them online. Sadly, some doctors will advise taking synthetic vitamins, which can be toxic to the liver over time. Naturopathic doctors and certified nutritionists with a clean eating philosophy would be the best to speak to about nutrition. 

 

Remember, we can live free like a dog, but we can’t eat food off the ground like they do or make our own vitamin C – so be sure to get enough through clean eating or organic vitamins!

 

Vitamin C Rich Foods (I always recommend organic)

  • All berries
  • Citrus (ex. oranges, grapefruit)

  • Pepper

  • Pineapples

  • Kale

  • Spinach

  • Lemons

  • Cantaloupes

  • Onions

  • Radishes

  • Dandelion Greens

  • Tomatoes

  • Swiss chard

  • Mangos

  • Watercress

  • Apples

  • Avocados

  • Broccoli

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My favorite Vitamin C supplement.

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My best pup.  R.I.P.

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Four Animal Reminders of Nature’s Healing Power

Step outside the vortex of man’s contrived bubble of busyness and you’ll find the most humbling of experiences – nature. The energy amidst the trees, wind, moving clouds, fallen pine needles and dormant sands can cut right to the core of one’s being and promote healing in places that modern convention can’t reach. Need proof? Look no further than the animals. Our own pets know nothing short of living in the moment, and have an innate need to bask in the glorious provisions of Mother Earth. Here are the four most common lessons animals are trying to teach us:

Celebrate the Sun

The sun has received a bad rap in recent years. But almost any dog will remind you, then sun can lift your spirits, boost your immunity and even help you sleep better. Even in the south where temperatures range from warm to blazing hot, it’s not uncommon to find dogs rolling happily in the grass on a beautiful, sunny day. Sometimes they will even freeze on their back with legs raised toward the sky as if to say, “thank you heaven, for your outpouring of good vibes.”

Go Green for Good Health

Cats may be carnivores and dogs omnivores, but both creatures know where to turn for tummy troubles and more – the green grasses of nature! It’s commonly known that our furry friends munch on grass when they’re not feeling well, and while vomiting often occurs in the aftermath, this is our animals’ way of reminding us that nature heals and the right amount of greens can rid our body of poisons. If grass can cure a little tummy troubles for our friends, imagine the possibilities that exist from the Earth’s raw, organic bounty!

Embrace the Dirt

Anyone with a horse will tell you that one of the most frustrating aspects of grooming is the after-bath roll in the dirt or mud. Ever wonder why that is? Behaviorists theorize that sand and dust on the coat of an animal serve as a type of sun protectant and insect repellant. Additionally, a good roll in the mud or dirt helps with regulating body temperature on hot days. Are all the chemicals in modern sunscreens a protective necessity? Horses and many others in the wild kingdom may say otherwise.

Raise Vibrations for Healing

If life is made up of vibrational frequency, then housecats hold a key to healing.  The average feline purrs at a vibration of 20-140 Hertz, and has been said to aid in the mending of broken bones and even injured nerves, muscles, soft tissue and ligaments. Feeling stressed? Hold a cat a little closer and allow the rhythm and vibration of their purrs help lower blood pressure and reduce swelling as well.

These are just a few of the many reasons to pay respect to animal behaviors. From creating their own pharmacies to embracing the power of now, animals have a way of connecting with and harnessing power from the Earth and “self” that humans can certainly learn from.