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What are the three pillars of health?

By Anna Webb – Broadcaster, Author, Trainer, studied natural nutrition and therapies with the College of Integrated Veterinary Therapies (CIVT) 2 years ago 5117 Views

Many years ago my dance teacher would say: “Your ankle joint is attached to your hip joint, which is attached to your elbows and your shoulders”. Only years later did I understand what she was talking about after my study with The College of Integrated Veterinary Therapies (CIVT) clarified this. The principle of the positive symbiosis between the three pillars of health underpins study with the CIVT.

So what are the three pillars of health?

One pillar comprises nutrition; the second is the immune system and the third is the physical frame. The principle of holistic healthcare relies on keeping each pillar strong so they support your pet’s health, like foundations to a house. To optimise it’s the healthy symbiotic relationship between them that’s critical. With nutrition forming a third of the equation, the CIVT endorses natural nutrition preferably raw food feeding.

My study made me understand why a diet that’s species appropriate, balanced, with nutritionally dense foods feeds the immune system’s pillar and the physical pillar to promote optimum health. The adage: “you are what you eat’ sums it up nicely. It’s not a new concept. Centuries ago in ancient Greece, Hippocrates famously stated: “Let medicine be thy food, and food be thy medicine’.

Thanks to innovative firms like Natural Instinct feeding raw is now so much easier and convenient than it was 15 years ago when I began feeding Molly.

The pillar of nutrition helps maintain a robust immune system (the second pillar of health), without which our pets can be prone to disease. Comprising a complex network of cells, tissues, organs and a fleet of white blood cells that bravely fights pathogens; the immune system like an internal knight in shining armour. Despite its powerful natural healing abilities, overtime the immune system is vulnerable to wear and tear from everyday ‘stressors’. Our modern world with its exhaust fumes, overly processed foods, unfiltered water, insecticides, over-vaccination and over medication with anti-inflammatories, antibiotics or steroids, all impact negatively overtime, weakening the body’s natural ability to fight disease. Keeping this internal ‘engine’ well nourished isn’t dissimilar from putting a good oil into your car. An awareness of supplements like pre and probitotics can boost an immune system, as can a daily dose of Vitamin C.

In the same way we take our cars for their MOT and regular tuning at the garage, we can keep our pet’s physique in peak condition with preventative care from physical therapies.  This is what comprises the third pillar of health – the physical frame. I couldn’t bear the thought of any side effects of chronic pain from arthritic joints, or a trapped nerve, torn ligament, or strained muscle negatively impacting Molly’s wellbeing as she got older. Integrating functional foods to work medicinally shows how nutrition also complements the pillar of physical health.   

Feeding an older dog appropriately on Natural Instincts ‘Senior Recipe’ works to nourish the joints and muscles with its added glucosamine, chondroitin and Vitamin C.

Renowned Animal Physiotherapist, Sherry Scott MBE, introduced me to a device called Photizo Vetcare in 2014, when Molly was 12. Sherry incorporated ‘red light’ / Phototherapy with Physiotherapy to speed up the natural healing of worn muscles and joints. The effect of Photizo’s pulsating LED and Infra-Red on Molly’s sore deformed feet was nothing less than miraculous. I’d take it with us everywhere. Shining the light I kept up our daily pre-progammed 30-second doses.

I’m prudent with Prudence my two-year old Miniature Bull terrier who is ridiculously accident-prone. One of her self-inflicted injuries, a luxating patella, is benefitting from massage, acupuncture and Photizo treatments, meaning we’ve not needed any anti-inflammatories. Mr Binks my ETT suffers from Legg Calves Perthes disease.  His left hip joint was removed at nine months (before I re-homed him) three years ago. Through diet and physical treatments his back left leg is now barely noticeably different now from his right. Proof indeed that proactive preventative care, combined with an understanding of the three pillars of health, can empower everyone to promote natural vibrant health.


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