Your dog’s body is quite wonderful. It has countless internal processes capable of balancing hormones, energy levels, its nervous system, organ health, gut bacteria as well as clearing toxins or excess nutrients, healing its bones, skin and managing its immune system to protect itself from disease and even creating many of its own nutrients if a lack occurs.
The elements in food are there to maintain and nourish your dog’s body to do those things.
Beyond natural aging processes your dog’s body is actually set-up for survival!

Because your dog’s body is always trying to survive and create balance it relies on certain aspects of food to keep doing so.
Many of the symptoms and disease we see in our dogs are due to the dog’s body not being able to achieve this balance, or finding it has a lot of excess to eliminate to do so.
All the processes your dog’s body uses to maintain balance and health create a kind of Cellular Flexibility, an ability to adapt to certain circumstances, assess how things ‘are’ internally and re-balance accordingly. This adaption is happening all the time, at every moment – not just if illness occurs. Illness tends to occur if these abilities are either blocked (by toxins, drugs or emotions) or if the nutrient elements it needs to stay adaptable and flexible are not available at the time, or over a period of time.

The thing is, the very things your dog’s body needs to obtain from food in order to maintain the cellular flexibility are the very things that get destroyed easily in heat, light and other processing methods.
They include un-heat-stable vitamins, minerals, almost all fatty acids (omegas) and other vital nutrients, all of which I have named the Nutritional Elements. The Nutritional Elements are not visible, they are almost like the components of food, at least before it is processed.

Processed dog food companies aim to replace nutrients like vitamin and minerals by adding them back in their products as powder supplements called Pre-mixes. In fact, it is the adding of these powders that enables products to be labelled Complete. (as well as a certain {4da997b282d5795c5afa16f0d1368cad8e81b680680781bf82c78f4866adc60f} of protein content)
So apart from the level of protein (which can come from peas, soya or any meat type) processed food is deemed Complete if it contains a Premix from an approved supplier.
There is no specification the Pre-mix needs to be of natural, absorbable version of nutrients. So across the board no matter what ingredients are used, and whether we consider those ingredients ‘good quality’ or not, different kibbles have a variety of either natural or un-natural versions of vitamins and minerals. Some include useable, absorbable premixes, others are not so, meaning its ticking the box of ‘complete’ in terms of the guidelines, but its not actually useful to the dogs body, so is not actually complete for the dog itself.

The guidelines for creating a Pre-mix covers certain vitamins and minerals and in the case of pups under 18months some fatty acids.
It does not include any of the Nutritional Elements.
Which means that NO processed food is Ever actually Complete in the sense it contains everything your dog needs to stay cellularly flexible and adaptable, and thus able to main the balancing, nutrient creating, healing abilities it has the potential for.
No matter how ‘good’ the ingredients seem to be, or the messages contained in the marketing material (which is designed to sell) says, processed can never be truly complete.
Only fresh, real Actual unprocessed foods contain the Nutritional Elements – lightly cooked or raw, this is not all about having to always feed raw food.

Certain types of processed food have been created in an effort to still include the Nutritional Elements, such as Cold-Pressed food or Air Dried foods. Whilst these are much ‘better’ as they at least contain some, they still do not include All the Nutritional Elements your dog’s body needs.

Some ingredients are so abundant in Nutritional Elements they easily encourage the dog’s body to be cellularly flexible and adaptable, these are often labelled Superfoods.
Raw foods contain a higher amount of the Nutritional Elements, but even lightly cooked real food contains them.

So what are the Nutritional Elements?
and how do you know if your dog is getting them all in their diet?

I made a video about them: https://youtu.be/r7w1O2Kdx6Q – hope you enjoy it 🙂
They are also revealed in my latest book Imperfectly Natural Canine.

These are Not, parts of a dogs meal, or ingredients they are an intrinsic part of the food itself.
Only Real food (raw OR cooked) has them. You cannot recreate nature!
Processed food can never replace the nourishment and empowerment that nature has to give.