Do Ingredients Matter?
We know you want the best for your dog. That’s why we're here. Not to fear monger, and not to upsell. We exist to present you with science (and a dash of common sense), and here it is. Many pet guardians opt for kibble as it’s super convenient and easy to store. However, the ingredients aside, the manufacturing process alone can be harmful to your dog's health.
Most kibble is made by rendering and extruding, a process which involves extremely high temperatures. This process helps manufacture a shelf-stable “food” but it also creates advanced glycation end products (AGEs) and advanced lipid peroxidation end products (ALEs).
AGEs are a type of harmful molecule that form in the body when sugars and proteins react together in a process known as glycation. This can occur naturally in the body, but it also happens when foods are cooked at high temperatures. This is significant because AGEs cause inflammation and premature aging. When they accumulate in the body, they can lead to a number of harmful health effects. They’ve been implicated in a variety of chronic diseases, including pancreatitis, diabetes, heart disease, and cancers. AGEs contribute to the development of these conditions by causing inflammation, damaging cells, and impairing the normal functioning of tissues and organs.
Exacerbating the matter, when proteins and fats are exposed to these high temperatures together, they undergo a chemical reaction called lipid peroxidation, the creation of advanced lipoxidation end products (ALEs). This reaction produces very harmful compounds, such as free radicals, which cause significant damage to cells and tissues in the body, and trigger inflammatory responses which can lead to many chronic diseases.
Additionally, the high temperatures used during the manufacturing destroy important nutrients, such as vitamins and enzymes, that your dog truly needs to maintain optimal health. This is why you often see the addition of so many synthetic nutrients.
Common Sense factor: Dogs, like humans, are not meant to live on an ultra processed, cereal based animal feed. We all thrive on real, fresh food. They need healthy, fresh, unadulterated fats and proteins! These nutrients are critical to a dog’s physical and mental wellbeing and longevity. And while it’s nearly impossible to avoid AGEs all together, it’s easy to drastically limit them. The less food is heated, the fewer of these terrible compounds they’ll be consuming.
This is the tip of the iceberg. If you want to know more about why fresh is best, check out this collection of nutrition services, webinars and books.