FREE RADICALS-WHAT ARE THEY?
What are free radicals? What do they have to do with my animal’s well-being?
To first understand the connection, we must have a brief look at basic biology and chemistry. According to scientific research (as you may remember from high school science class), cells are made up of molecules which are made up of atoms. Atoms are made up of a nucleus, neutrons, protons, and electrons. Each proton (positively charged) is paired with an electron (negatively charged) particle. They balance out the chemistry of the atom. Once the atom is full of protons and electrons, the molecules will split and enter a newly formed shell of an atom by way of “bonding” together. Atoms are always seeking stability in terms of containing an equal number of protons and electrons. Strong molecules split and pair equally. When weaker bonds split, the result is an unpaired molecule- a free radical.
HOW DOES THIS AFFECT MY ANIMAL?
Free radicals play an important role in the biological functions of your animal. They are responsible for aiding white blood cells with “eating” bacteria and other pathogens in the body. However mostly they act in an unpredictable and DESTRUCTIVE way. Free radicals are very likely present in animals with chronic allergies and chronic muscle soreness/joint pain. When free-radicals are formed, they behave in an “irrational” way, trying desperately to pair with any other molecule it can find. They are very unstable and seek balance. If the free radical is successful in “stealing” another pair’s molecule, the third molecule then becomes a free radical. Ordinarily, this chain of events would not compromise the well-being of your animal friend. However, this series of events can cause a cascading event, wreaking havoc and eventually harming once cell after another. Free radicals can result in serious tissue damage. Aging is also a significant opportunity for free-radical damage to occur within your animal as the body is producing fewer antibodies to combat the damage. Once the chain of compromised cells begins, it can, If untreated, lead to certain types of CANCERS, irreparable ORGAN DAMAGE and other terminal illness.
WHAT CAUSES FREE RADICALS?
There are many known causes of free radicals in the body; both human and animal. Have you ever torn a muscle? Maybe walked up too many stairs or lifted too heavy of a weight at the gym and felt it two days later? This is a classic example of tissue damage. Physical pain from tissue damage is a result of too many free radicals running around the body.
Another common cause of free radicals in the body is a compromised IMMUNE SYSTEM. Because of the effect that free-radicals have on cells, in an already weakened immune system, the free radicals (if not treated) can cause serious damage to muscles and have even been linked to some types of cancer.
Free radicals are connected to all types of pollution; air, water and food chemicals, and even the cleanliness of the animal’s home. Be aware of your environment and do your best to allow your animal a clean, safe environment. It may be a good idea to look into supplementing your animal’s diet with diatomaceous earth or colloidal silver (see earlier articles) if you reside in an especially toxic environment.
Free radicals have been linked to poor nutritional habits, lack of exercise and lack of rest between exercise sessions. Free radical damage is not foreign in stressful environments- remember animals are affected by stress far more deeply than humans are. It’s ALWAYS important to allow them an outlet.
HOW TO PREVENT FREE RADICAL DAMAGE
The easiest way for you and your animal friends to prevent free radical damage is to consume as many ANTIOXIDANTS as possible. It’s not a coincidence that antioxidants are said to help prevent cancer. This is due to the negative effects of free radicals on weak cells, enabling cancer to occur. Some examples of foods rich in antioxidants are:
-Darker coloured vegetables- Broccoli, Kale, Carrots, Red Peppers, Yams,
-Berries- Strawberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, Goji
-Vitamins E, A, C, Beta carotene
Obviously some of these are not appropriate for your animal friends. Contrary to popular belief, feeding thoroughly cooked green veggies to your cat and dog is healthy and beneficial. You may also add turmeric, milk thistle and astralagus as a supplement to your animal’s regular diet.
Another way to prevent free radical damage is to ensure your animal friend has a balanced diet, exercise and rest schedule. The lesser the animal is stressed, the lesser the possibility of damage.
Regular energy/healing work is absolutely beneficial to animals. By removing negative energy from the animal’s field, the animal will have a healthier body, mind and spirit!