Where it spoke about IBD and leaky gut syndrome, I was uncertain if this was limited to GI disorders or if also included skin disorders as well. I wanted to clarify so I inquired via email and was told yes, it applies to the skin disorders associated with food sensitivities as well.
Latest developments in pet animal diagnostics relate to determining the optimal foods for an individual animal’s genetic makeup and food sensitivities/intolerances. This approach depends upon the principles of nutrigenomics. Nutrigenomics is an emerging science that studies the molecular relationships between nutrition and the response of genes in promoting health. The important point here is that “Wholesome nutrition is the key to a healthy immune system and resistance to disease”.
Food Sensitivity and Intolerance. Diet has long been recognised as the cause of hypersensitivity-like reactions in dogs, cats and people,and Type 1 hypersensitivity has been well documented. Types III and IV hypersensitivity are postulated to occur as well. Immediate hypersensitivity usually occurs within mins/hours,whereas delayed hypersensitivity is hours/days, the latter symptoms being more difficult to connect with the foods eaten. There is a high correlation of delayed sensitivity with the amount and frequency of food eaten. Primary food allergens are corn, wheat, soy, beef, eggs and milk, whilst secondary food allergens are lamb,rabbit, venison, chicken, turkey, barley,millet, oatmeal, salmon, white fish, rice,quinoa and potatoes. Food intolerance is the third most common hypersensitivity, after flea bite and atopy (inhalant allergy), and makes up to 1-10% of all allergic disease. It has no age, breed or sex predilection, and most
affected animals have been eating offending foods for more than two years. Food intolerances mimic other skin syndromes, a major complaint being pruritis (itching. Itching and scratching is bilateral and there is often inflammation of the external ear canals (Otis externa). Secondary skin diseases such as both wet and dry seborrhea and pyoderma are also common.
Options for Management and Therapy
We need to create a healthy acid-base balance within the tissues through optimal nutrition. However, diet elimination trials over a period of 4-6 weeks often give poor compliance.
Diet must be individualised using nutrigenomic principles. Avoid additives and supplements and avoid switching from diet to diet. From 1-15% of cases have concurrent GI tract issues, and some cases have swollen lymph nodes. Affected pets can have tension-fatigue, malaise and dullness; effects are non-seasonal and are poorly responsive to steroids.
Nutrigenomics – The New Science of Nutrition. Nutrigenomics seeks to provide a molecular understanding for
how common dietary ingredients (i.e. nutrition) affect health by altering the expression and/or structure of an individual’s genetics makeup. It does this by studying the relationship between nutrition and the response of genes in promoting health. Different diets alter gene expression, and specific nutrients affect body responses in a form of a signature; an individuals’ response is termed their “molecular dietary signature”. This
signature varies between individuals according to their DNA. Thus, nutrigenomics identifies the optimal foods for an individual according to his/her molecular dietary signature. These
individualised diets are proven in dogs for liver cleansing, arthritis, obesity etc.
Genetic differences lead to quantitive variations in dietary needs for energy and
nutrients to maintain health, and play a role on the onset, incidence, progression,
and/or severity of chronic diseases. Dietary interventions based upon an animal’s nutritional requirements when combined with their genetic makeup (genotype) are then used to prevent, mitigate or cure chronic diseases.
Previous Testing has typically been based on IgE, IgG, and immune complexes combined with complement. These tests have high sensitivity but lower individual specificity, and only measure more immediate-type reactions. Newer Testing can use serum, saliva or feces, with a simple ELISA or other immunoassay platform to identify IgG, IgA or immune complexes to foods in serum, and IgA or IgM antibodies to foods in saliva Antibodies to foods appear in saliva several months before the animal has a diagnosis of IBD (inflammatory bowel
disease) or the “leaky gut syndrome. Saliva testing can thus reveal the latent or pre-clinical form of food sensitivity. Food Sensitivity – Future Testing at Three Levels
1. Screening Kit: Point-of-Service owner/vet clinic
testing. Tests for salivary IgA and IgM reactants in healthy
pets with.known or suspected food intolerances.
2. Serum Testing Kit : further vet and laboratory testing.
3. DNA/MicroArray/Heat Map”: Identifies pets needing
individualised nutriogenomic foods.
Hemopet has recently patented this breakthrough diagnostic food sensitivity screening, and will offer testing from the last quarter of this year. Further details can be found at http://groups.yahoo....p/JeanDoddsinNZ
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