Mika Ingerman from Team Snazzy Goat joins us to give us an update about her Cashmere pair Harry and David, Fiona Delfino recaps Nature Coast CDE at Black Prong Equestrian Center. Plus, Dr. Wendy talks about Food Therapy for Cold. This episode is brought to you by Purina Mills. Listen in.....
The TCVM segment starts at 32:24
We all know about Yin and Yang in TCVM. Yin is the cold and Yang is the hot and we need to stay in balance to be healthy. In TCVM we also talk about disease in terms of the 6 pathogens(Wind,Cold,Summer Heat,Damp,Dryness and Fire). These pathogens attack the body and disrupt the Yin and Yang balance and block the flow of Qi and Blood. When Qi and Blood are Stagnant, we feel pain and are susceptible to disease.
Qi is the body's energy and the Blood (in TCVM terms) are the body's fluids, (white and red blood cells, lymph, stomach and intestinal fluid, intercellular fluids and other body fluids.) We can think of Qi as metabolic energy and the Blood as the immune system and circulatory system. Cold causes blood vessels to contract and slows metabolism. For example, when you have an acute injury, you ice the area to reduce the swelling and relieve pain by dulling the pain receptors in the skin.
Cold is obviously associated with Winter. Cold can combine with other pathogenic factors such as Wind, Dryness and Damp to invade the body and attack the body's warming element - Yang. When the Yang is damaged, the body has to work harder to keep warm which can consume the Qi (including the Wei Qi - immune defenses) making the animal vulnerable to disease.
In horses, Cold conditions can manifest as cold extremities, arthritic pain and joint stiffness, muscle pain and stiffness, lethargy, respiratory disease and impaction colic.
What can we do to help our horses with Cold ?
Horses tend to drink less water if it is Cold. Horses with dental issues, especially geriatric horses can experience tooth pain with extremely cold water and will drink less. Warming the water either with a tank heater, bucket warmers or adding a few kettles of hot water to their tank can help them drink more. Adding their favorite electrolyte can help too. If they like cinnamon flavor, adding a stick of cinnamon and a few slices of ginger (both warming foods) can make the water more appealing too.
The basic theory of Food therapy is to eat seasonally and to use food as medicine to balance the Yin and Yang. For Cold conditions, this would involve decreasing Cool food in the diet and increasing Warming foods.
Before changing anything in your horse's diet, consult with your veterinarian to avoid exacerbating any metabolic conditions.
So what are Cooling foods for horses ? Some common ones that may be in your horses diet now are :
Some neutral foods for horses include :
For Turmeric info listen to my interview with Dr. Doug English of Turmeric Life
For Bulk spices - Nuts.com
Black Sunflower seeds Tractor Supply
Practices Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine in Sarasota, Florida