What is insulin resistance in relation to dog diabetes and why are dog diseases now the same as ours? Here is the common factor.
Crappy food. Of course this is not a scientific answer but let's just get to the point.
When people develop Type 2 Diabetes, they don't realize they have spent years eating far too many simple carbohydrates that don't fuel the body with nourishment.
Products with sugar; corn syrup (which appears in thousands of products including frozen creamed corn and even tomato sauce!); white bread; and white pasta. Then there is the obvious bad stuff like sweets, candy, sodas, sweet tea. Alcohol is on this list too.
Now let's look at what we have unknowingly done to create insulin resistence and canine diabetes. (It's actually spelled resistance, but it is commonly mispelled.)
Dogs are carnivores! Millions of us know that and keep buying bag after bag of dog food at the discount pet store. What is that food filled with? Over processed corn, wheat flour, rice flour, soy, and processed meat-like products that are not fit for human consumption.
Since dogs are carnivores, what do you think all those simple carbohydrates do to them? You got it.
What Is Insulin Resistance
Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas which allows the cells of the body to use glucose or blood sugar for fuel.
The pancreas is still producing insulin with no problem. The condition of insulin resistance occurs when the cells of the body develop a resistance to insulin. This causes the pancreas to produce more and more insulin, in an effort to overcome the cells resistance. Serum (blood) insulin levels then start to exceed normal limits and will become very high.
This condition starts slowly as a result of poor diet and and develops over time into a condition known as Syndrome X.
Syndrome X ( Hyperinsulinemia)
This is a condition where the body is over producing insulin in response to a diet full of simple carbohydrates (in the case of dogs, this would be unnecessary carbohydrates of any type... treats full of flour, sugar, peanut butter, grains, fruit, or even too many vegetables).
Syndrome X or Hyperinsulinemia is a condition related to hypoglycemia, and is a precursor to other conditions such as full blown diabetes, and heart disease. It increases cellular inflammation, and as such, is indicated in other inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.
Dietary adjustment is critical.
In the case of dogs, elimination of unnecessary carbohydrates, or at the very least introducing higher quality ( low glycemic ) carbohydrates is essential for controlling this condition.
Now however, if insulin resistance is allowed to continue without dietary correction, it will eventually cause the pancreas to just quit making insulin, and full blown dog diabetes will ensue. Then insulin by mouth or injection will be necessary for survival. This is the end result.
Interestingly, another precursor to dog diabetes is pancreatitis and while no one seems to be certain of the exact cause, episodes are brought on by the wrong foods.
When will we learn?
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And now I must thank Sandra King of Dog Nutrition Naturally since she explained the bulk of this information to me.
Sandra is a Natural Health Practitioner in Canada. She helps both people and pets improve their health by offering natural, holistic food solutions and remedies that include herbs and supplements from Nature's Sunshine products.
I am always grateful when she fills in the blanks for me...and I am proud to call her my friend.