Dog & Cat Nutrition – part 1

I just shared an article from Dogs Naturally Magazine giving ’10 Simple Rules to Get You Started’ on raw feeding your dog.  This prompted me to repost this article that I wrote a while ago on dog and cat nutrition:

Let’s start by looking at the commercial food market…

The food we feed our pets has changed considerably over the years, as indeed has our own diet.  Years ago, animals were fed on scraps and left-overs from the food that we cooked for ourselves, so essentially they were eating ‘human’ food, however as our lifestyles have become busier and we now eat more ‘convenience food’, so our pets are being given more branded pet food.  But is this a positive step?

Pet foods have become a “multibillion dollar industry” according to Donald R Strombeck, author of “Home-Prepared Dog and Cat Diets: The Healthful Alternative” (quoted in an article in The Bark Issue 42: May/Jun 2007).  The Daily Mail, in January 2010, stated that the “pet food industry is valued at £2 billion and growing.”  Products are advertised as being “the best” and “complete” and in fact they say that human food should not be given to animals, but is this the case?  Unfortunately advertising laws around pet foods are less strict than those for human food and no-one really monitors the truth of what is being said.  Also, there is little redress if the claims turn out to be false.

Veterinary students have often had very little teaching on what constitutes a healthy diet for the animals they will be caring for.  Much of the information they actually receive comes from the pet food industry itself and this is then what the vets tell their patients.  Manufacturers sponsor food displays in vet surgeries.  Hill Science Plan sponsored the British Veterinary Association’s Congress in 2009 and signed a partnership with the British Veterinary Dental Association to sponsor animal tooth care.  Royal Canin has partnerships with leading veterinary schools and Universities and they run Pet Health Counsellor Courses.  Many pet websites are affiliated in some way with pet food corporations, in fact the Pet Health Council, described as an independent website, is sponsored by the Petfood Manufacturers Association.  They claim “that processed food is best”, warning: ‘It would not be possible to feed your pet an adequate home-prepared diet” (“Is the pet food you’re serving up killing your 4-legged friend?”, Daily Mail online, 20 January 2010)

Most of the vets who specialise in nutrition are taught using information from the industry and end up working for them.  Also, most research funding comes from pet food producers which is a conflict of interest.  Even organisations such as the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) are made up of people form the industry.

In part 2 I’ll continue looking at processed pet foods and why these might not actually be as healthy as the advertising claims.

If you are interested in nutrition for your pet and would like to explore this further, contact me for a no-obligation chat where we can discuss your situation and see what simple changes you might be able to make to enhance their wellbeing.  My contact details are:

robyn@equenergy.com

07980 669303

You can also read more about my work on my website:

www.equenergy.com/

 

You can read the full text of this article here.

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What is ‘META-Health’ and how can it help me get well? (Part 5)

So, having looked at the process of META-Health, and a personal example from my own life, how can this help you in your healing journey?

My first step in working with a client is to ask for their ‘timeline’.  This is basically a chronological account of all the Significant Emotional Events in their life.  I personally like people to write this covering all the way from birth onwards as it can help me to detect repeating patterns and get a sense of the person, but in any case the timeline should go back to at least 3 years before symptoms appear.  I also need to know the person’s medical diagnosis, if they have one, and a list of any medications they’re taking, or have taken, for the issue.  It is also useful to know if they’ve tried other interventions and how helpful – or not – these were.

Once I know which tissue is affected I can work out which brain relay this relates to.  From this I can tell which stage they are at in the healing process:

It is then possible to work back to find the initial conflict (2).

Writing the timeline in itself can be very healing.  As one client said to me, it was amazing to put her life story down on paper and see it all in one place for the first time.  This was a kind of affirmation for her that she had, in fact, dealt with a lot in her life and that she was actually stronger than she had realised.  It can also be a very cathartic process to put down, in black and white, things that you might have been bottling up inside, or trying to push to the back of your mind.  This process helps you to look at things and to acknowledge them so that you can then start to process them in order to let go and to move on.

I often get the feeling that, in our society, we are encouraged to ‘move on’ before we’re ready.  As I said earlier, trauma is subjective, so other people might not appreciate the impact that an event has had on a person.  They might, with the best of intentions, want to encourage the person to ‘put it all behind them’ or to ‘think positively’ but this is not possible until the person has finished processing what happened.  Or perhaps it’s our own inner voice that is encouraging us to push everything under the carpet and carry on as if nothing has happened.  However, if we don’t listen to our inner needs, they will just start to get louder in order to be heard!

META-Health teaches great self compassion and understanding.  We can truly begin to see that we are doing the best we can with the resources available to us in a given situation.  Also, our bodies don’t make mistakes.  If we’re experiencing symptoms or discomfort, it’s just our body trying to let us know that something isn’t right, but if we listen and make some changes – meet the needs that are currently unmet – then the body will find its way back to balance and wellbeing again.

So, having identified the trauma, or ‘UDIN’, what next?  As part of a consultation I will look at all the layers of a the client’s life: physical, emotional, social and spiritual.  I will also consider their characteristics: do they tend to be primarily a visual, auditory or kinaesthetic person, for example.  Taking these things into consideration I then put together a suggested plan of action, to discuss with the client, to help them create the healthier, happier life they dream of.

This plan can draw on a range of different therapies depending on what is most appropriate for the person in their particular situation.  I personally offer a variety of energy therapies including Reiki / Energy Healing, Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT / sometimes referred to as ‘tapping’) along with some nutrition, lifestyle and relaxation techniques and tips.  I am very happy to offer these as part of a client’s action plan and for them to continue to work with me if they choose.

In addition I have a wide network of colleagues offering other complementary holistic therapies that we can draw upon to create a full and rounded wellbeing package.

The steps to be taken and the time required to create a new and healthier life will depend on the person, their condition, the circumstances in which they find themselves and their level of commitment, however it doesn’t need to be ‘hard work’ and the journey is in itself something to enjoy and to learn from.  It is worth remembering that it has taken time for your body to get into dis-ease and it will take time to get back to wellbeing but at each step along the way you will see an improvement.  This process can also result in lasting change and a whole new perspective, helping you to better deal with any issues that you face in the future.

If you’d like to talk with me about anything I’ve mentioned above, please get in touch:

robyn@equenergy.com

07980 669303

Alternatively you can see more about what I do on my website: www.equenergy.com

 

(This post was taken from my article on META-Health.  You can read the full text here)

What is ‘META-Health’ and how can it help me get well? (Part 4)

Previously I talked about my personal experience of how a trauma created digestive dis-ease in the form of IBS and food intolerances.

Another common feature with fears around survival are that the body retains water.  Its reasoning is that alone it is more difficult to find this life-sustaining resource and so it must hold on to as much as it can until it is reunited with the tribe.  When the body again feels it is safe it can release the water.  At its peak (6) this is often experienced as a migraine, and this is what happened for me.  It can also mean that you pee more than normal as your body pushes out the excess water.

As I mentioned in my last post, I was repeatedly being retriggered as contact with my Dad did not go smoothly and it often pushed me straight back into stress.  This is what is known as a ‘hanging healing’, where the body repeatedly cycles through the process, unable to break out of the pattern and complete the journey through regeneration and normalisation to wellbeing.

This pattern continued for many years for me, even after my Dad’s death, because by then other traumas had added their triggers and, as a consequence, my wellbeing suffered considerably.  In fact this is one of the factors that lead me to explore complementary therapies and ways that I could address the underlying cause of my dis-ease rather than just taking pills, which might help in the short term but never fully got rid of the problem.

Having studied META-Health I now have a greater understanding of what’s going on in my body and what my symptoms are telling me.  If I know which tissue is involved this tells me which brain relay has been triggered and therefore what the deeper issue is that I need to address.  For example, in my story above, I needed to let go of my fears for my survival and know that my needs would be met by those around me until I was an adult and able to fully care and provide for myself.

I now also know that any symptoms I experience will indicate where I am in the process so that I can know how best to work towards my recovery.

Through my energy work practice and creating a diet that is more appropriate for my needs, I have now been able to support my body to become healthier than it’s ever been.

In the next blog I will look at how the META-Health process can be used to help identify the root cause of any disease so that it can be addressed directly in order to clear it and allow the body to return to health and wellbeing.

If you’d like to talk with me about anything I’ve mentioned above, please get in touch:

robyn@equenergy.com

07980 669303

Alternatively you can see more about what I do on my website: www.equenergy.com

 

(This post was taken from my article on META-Health.  You can read the full text here)

What is ‘META-Health’ and how can it help me get well? (Part 3)

In the last post I talked about the trauma I’d experienced at the announcement of my parents’ plan to get divorced.  This was my UDIN (Unexpected trauma that was Dramatic, Isolating and for which I had No coping strategy – point 2 in the diagram above).

Shortly after the announcement, Mum took us to her parents’ house for the weekend to give my Dad space to pack up and move out.  I remember ‘running’ around on my crutches and being a bit ‘hyper’ because the stress hormones, adrenaline and cortisol, were pumping round my body as I went from the ‘freeze’ state of shock and into the ‘fight or flight’ state of the stress phase (3).

We then returned home and over the next few weeks life settled down into its new routine.  I began to realise that, actually, life was a lot calmer without my Dad around.  Also, contrary to the belief of my primitive brain, I had not been ‘cast out from my tribe’.  Instead I discovered that my Mum and I had a lot in common and were very close whereas my brother – now the only boy in the household and quite a different personality type – was becoming a bit of an outsider.  This realisation was a ‘shift’ for me (4).  (It wasn’t quite a resolution as there were still issues going on that continued to trigger my fears (around contact with my Dad) but it was enough to send me into the second phase (5, 6 & 7) ).

If you’ve been following this series of blogs, you might have already begun to suspect what kind of symptoms I then experienced.  Earlier I talked about my fears being related to survival and so this was a brain stem issue.  This relay relates to various tissues including those responsible for digestion.  I mentioned that ” my whole insides rebelled ” and ” I felt that all the stuffing had been knocked out of me”.  Also the news of my parents’ divorce came as a complete shock and I couldn’t digest it.  All this meant that the organ tissue which held the shock was my intestines and when I went in to regeneration this is where I experienced dis-ease.  I began to suffer from IBS and food intolerances as the tissues started to heal.

During the stress phase these tissues had added extra cells in order to better digest the trauma.  Now that there had been a shift these extra cells were no longer needed and so the body started to break them down and eliminate them, causing my symptoms of pain, nausea, cramping and diarrhoea.

In my next post, I’ll look at what happened next and how I was able to start the journey back to better health and wellbeing.

If you’d like to talk with me about anything I’ve mentioned above, please get in touch:

robyn@equenergy.com

07980 669303

Alternatively you can see more about what I do on my website: www.equenergy.com

 

(This post was taken from my article on META-Health.  You can read the full text here)

Deepening your connection – Part 5

Other ways of supporting your own wellbeing and balance include:

  • taking time-out for yourself
  • meditation / mindfulness
  • physiotherapy / chiropractic / massage sessions
  • a healthy diet
  • getting sufficient sleep
  • complementary therapies (eg homeopathy, aromatherapy Bach Flower remedies, EFT, healing, etc) 

I personally offer a range of support which can be used face-to-face or at a distance:

  • MetaHealth : This sees dis-ease as a process and, by analysing what is going on for the person, it can trace back to find the original trigger behind the symptoms. The practitioner can then suggest ways in which the trigger can be addressed directly, and cleared, allowing the person to make the journey back to good health.
  • Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) : this uses the same meridian lines followed by Traditional Chinese medicine, however without the needles! It helps to clear blocked traumas and so is a very effective therapy.  It can be used with a wide range of issues including chronic pain, anxiety, limiting beliefs, allergies and phobias.
  • Energy Healing / Reiki : This is a wonderfully relaxing therapy which encourages your body to naturally move into the parasympathetic cycle of rest and repair. It can be used to support a wide range of issues including:
    • healing of injuries
    • detoxification (eg after chemotherapy of giving up smoking)
    • pain relief
    • balancing
    • a sense of wellbeing and calm
  • Nutrition : I am currently studying to be a nutritional therapist and I can advise you on ‘clean eating’ to support health and wellbeing

 

The information in this article was taken from my workshops and video series on giving horses a more natural lifestyle and the benefits that this brings, not only to them but to their owners / carers.  To see more, please follow this link:

www.equenergy.com/horse-care-video-series

If you have comments or questions about anything in this article, or if you would like to book a session with me, please don’t hesitate to get in touch: 

            email:              robyn@equenergy.com

mobile:           07980 669303

You can also read more about me and my work on my website: www.equenergy.com

 

(Read the full article here)

Giving Healing Some Horse Power – part 6

The right fuel

As someone who’s experienced food intolerances in the past I’ve become very interested in reading labels and knowing what’s in the food that I eat.  Also, through my work with horses I’ve seen the consequences of a diet that is not appropriate to the animal’s needs.

Many of the commercial horse feeds are loaded with sugar.  They also contain chemicals such as pesticides and mould inhibitors.  All this plays havoc with the horse’s metabolism leading to a variety of health conditions.  Domesticated horses are genetically identical to their wild cousins and so their digestive systems need to be given the same diet, that is lots of high fibre, low sugar forage supplemented as necessary with other plants, herbs, vegetables and fruits to ensure they get all the vitamins and minerals they require.  Horses’ digestive systems work on a fermentation system to extract the nutrients they need from this diet, meaning that they rely on a good balance of healthy gut bacteria.  Stress, medication and toxic chemicals take their toll on these bacteria, upsetting the healthy balance and causing dis-ease.

This is also true for us.  Many of us lead busy lives and so have come to rely on ready made and microwaveable meals.  These often contain high levels of sugar and salt and the processing that is done in their preparation destroys much of the goodness.  In addition our fruits and vegetables are produced through intensive farming methods using chemical sprays, which result in fewer nutrients and also toxins that overload the liver.

I believe it is very important to source ingredients that are as healthy and natural as possible.  Buy organic where you can or, even better, grow your own.  Cook from scratch (if you’re short on time perhaps you can do this in advance and freeze portions for later meals) adding herbs and spices for extra flavour rather than salt or sugar.  Include a wide range of foods and colours to ensure that you’re getting enough vitamins and minerals.  If you eat meat, fish, eggs and/or dairy I would again recommend buying organic and unprocessed options where possible to avoid the hormones, antibiotics and other chemicals that can be found in some of these foods.

healthy-food-rainbow

If you you’d like to review your diet and see where you might be able to make some healthy changes, please feel free to contact me to book a session:

email:              robyn@equnergy.com

phone:             07980 669303

You can also see more on my website: www.equenergy.com

 

Taken from Giving Healing Some Horse Power.  You can read the full text here.