The innate immune system is an animal’s first line of defense against foreign intruders like parasites, bacteria, viruses, and cancer causing agents. These primary defense cells require an optimum level of protein along with certain vitamins, minerals, and immune boosting nutrients. While healthy food, plenty of water, and exercise are a great place to start in ensuring your pet has a strong and healthy immune system, there is more that can be done to boost their overall health. Dr. Bill’s Canine and Feline Immune Support supplements are highly palatable nutritional powders that support the innate immune system in its daily fight against disease producing organisms. Below, we dig a little deeper into the benefits of some of the key ingredients found in Immune Support so you can better understand why this supplement is beneficial to your pet’s overall health and wellness.
Colostrum contains an array of immune supporting nutrients. A mother’s body will produce a specific type of milk that is highly concentrated in antibodies to help support their little one’s immune system, which is why it is crucial for puppies and kittens to remain with their mothers during the first few months of their lives. This passive immunity can also be gained through supplementation by using bovine colostrum. Colostrum has a very specific effect on the gastrointestinal tract as it facilitates the balancing of the intestinal flora, stabilizes the immune status of the gut, and aids in digestion and proper motility of the bowel. Since 90% of all toxins, bacteria, viruses, and fungi enter the body through the gut, it is helpful for it to remain healthy.
Lactoferrin is a type of iron-building glycoprotein that provides anti-bacterial activity. It is a component of the immune system responsible for defense at the mucosal level and is crucial to the increase in immune functions for infants who are still nursing off their mothers. Lactoferrin works to boost immune-balancing T-cells and increase natural white blood cells, which help regulate the body’s defense against pathogens and it has natural antifungal, antibacterial, and anti viral abilities.
One ingredient that has overwhelmingly been proven to enhance the innate immune is Beta Glucan. Beta Glucans are sugars found in the cell walls of bacteria, fungi, yeast, algae, lichens, and some plants and are often used as medication for high-cholesterol, diabetes, cancer, and to boost weakened immune systems. When Beta-Glucan is ingested, it activates the immune cells known as Microphages, which target, trap, and eliminate foreign substances. Through the activation of Microphages, the immune system becomes stronger and more responsive to fighting off these substances.
Zinc is a trace element that is not only an important aspect of overall nutrition, but is necessary for a healthy immune system. The body needs zinc to activate T-cells, which help the body by controlling and regulating immune responses and attacking infected or cancerous cells. A lack of zinc can make the body more susceptible to disease and illness, and deficiencies can occur if there is not a high enough consumption from diet or supplementation. Numerous studies have shown that supplemental zinc can help bring a suppressed immune system back to its normal state.
Bifidobacteria are one of the major genera of bacteria that make up the gastrointestinal tracts. These vital colonizers are an integral part of healthy and normal microbiota existing in intestines, stomach, and the colon. Some bifidobacteria are used as a probiotic – they are considered ‘friendly’ or ‘good’ bacteria that help restore balance to the gut flora and help the stomach and intestines perform their essential functions.