As your pets age, sometimes their energy wanes, causing them to become less active. Less active play and exercise can lead to weight gain, less joint mobility, and many other health issues.
If your aging pet isn’t as active as he once was, there are things you can do to help him remain energetic throughout each phase of life.
Your pet gets energy in several ways — such as through proper nutrition and vitamin and mineral supplementation. But what may be the most important in providing your pet with abundant energy is the mitochondria. (01)
What are Mitochondria and What Do they Do?
Mitochondria are known as the powerhouses of the cell. They are found in every one of your pet’s body cells and are responsible for providing most of your pet’s energy. If the mitochondria aren’t functioning properly, your pet’s health can suffer.
Even though mitochondria are in all body cells, they are most abundant in the structures requiring the most oxygen, such as the liver, kidneys, brain, and muscle cells, especially the heart. The mitochondria in the heart comprise up to 40% of the cellular volume, and are responsible for meeting the high energy demand of the beating heart. (02)
The mitochondria are responsible for:
- Converting glucose (sugar) into ATP (energy)
- Powering the body’s chemical reactions
- Storing calcium necessary for muscle function, blood clotting, etc.
- Taking nutrients from the cell and turning them into energy
What Causes the Mitochondria to Malfunction?
When the mitochondria falter and can’t produce enough energy, the organism they support can be in trouble. During aging, mitochondria become larger and less numerous, and mitochondrial respiration decreases. This can lead to cellular oxygen stress and damage.
What this tells us is that the mitochondria play an important role in the aging process of your pets.
Diminished ATP activity and oxidative stress are common causes of illnesses. The structures most affected are those most dependent on oxygen metabolism, such as the vital organs and muscles. (03)
What Are the Symptoms of Mitochondrial Dysfunction?
Mitochondrial dysfunction can present itself in a variety of ways. As detrimental as this can be on your pet’s body, there are signs and symptoms that can alert you to this problem, such as: (04)
- Bloating and diarrhea
- Chronic constipation
- Diminished hearing and vision
- Loss of muscle coordination
- Reduced or absent reflexes
- Reduced function of sensory nerves
Many times, mitochondrial dysfunction is an inherited condition. But, no matter how it occurs, there are steps you can take to improve your pet’s mitochondrial health to prevent or treat the potentially detrimental effects of mitochondrial dysfunction. (05)
Strategies to Boost Mitochondrial Function and Increase Energy
Humic and Fulvic Acids
Studies have shown that incorporating supplements containing humic and fulvic acid into your pet’s diet can increase energy, protect against cellular damage, and promote healing.
Humic and fulvic acids are organic substances that come from the soil. When plant matter dies, the remains of the matter transform into what’s known as humic substances that have powerful healing properties. Poli Pet Boost and Renew have proprietary formulations of both humic and fulvic acids.
Humic and fulvic acids have the capacity to help to heal your pet’s mitochondria through the following effects:
The mitochondria need these minerals to function at their peak. Without these components, they are missing vital keys to complete the energy cycle, which hinders repair. This can cause a back-up of toxins in your pet which can cause further damage and a further decrease in energy. Humic and fulvic acids can help not only to restore your pet’s energy levels, but also to aid in detoxification. (06)
Certain nutrients can improve your pet’s mitochondrial health. Certain vitamins, fruits, and vegetables, when included in your pet’s diet can help improve mitochondrial function. An antioxidant diet rich in the following can improve your pet’s health and energy. (07)
- Carnitine, an amino acid that boosts metabolism and mitochondrial function, is found in red meat, chicken, milk, fish and beans. These are all safe for pets in limited quantities.
- Lipoic acid is a compound made in the body, but when needed can be obtained through supplementation.
- Vitamin C and Vitamin E can be ingested through supplementation and certain diets.
Mitochondria provide all the power and energy for your pet. If the mitochondria can’t get the nutrients they need to function, your pet can experience diminished energy, premature aging, disease, and a plethora of other issues.
If your pet is displaying any unusual symptoms, look to her diet for any nutritional deficiencies.
Remember, food is medicine.
The health of your pets’ mitochondria is vital to their energy, wellness, and longevity. By assuring your pets have adequate exercise, fresh water, a healthy diet, and supplementation that is appropriate for their age, type, and needs, you can make sure their mitochondria function optimally to sustain them for years to come.
What steps are you going to take today to improve your pet’s overall health and energy?