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What are SPMs and Why Does My Autoimmune Dog Need Them?



What on earth am I talking about you ask? These relatively newly discovered naturally occurring chemicals  play a crucial role in autoimmune disease and the reason for this is the link between autoimmunity and inflammation. Inflammation is one of the underlying drivers of autoimmunity so to get our dogs immune systems back into balance it is crucial that we reduce and resolve the inflammatory pattern. SPMS can help us achieve this so stay tuned to learn more in todays short video.


So what are SPMS? Spms are short for  specialized pro-resolving mediators….yes I know- boring name. But bear with me!! These are  lipid or fat molecules that play an essential role in helping to reduce and resolve inflammation patterns as  well as helping to repair your dogs tissues after an immune response. There are a number of different types of these spms but all of them contribute in some way to help regulate a healthy immune and inflammation response.

When it comes to autoimmune disease patterns, how do these SPMS work??

 

Firstly as many of you know if you watch my channel, autoimmune disease has an underlying cause of chronic inflammation. I know I talk a lot about inflammation and you might think this is not that significant. But unless we can get this inflammation response to switch off, we can never really reverse autoimmune disease along with many other diseases. These SPMS can help to regulate our dogs inflammation response by reducing what are known as pro inflammatory cytokines – these are molecules found in immune and other cells that can help to create inflammation.

We all know this when our dog gets an injury for example. Acute inflammation is essential to start to help the body heal and repair. Think of this response like a light switch that the body has to switch on . In cases of  autoimmunity, this can get out of balance and rather than resolving, this inflammation ‘light’ switch stays on leading to that chronic inflammation and tissue damage. So spms can really help when it comes to this more chronic pattern, helping to switch the light off.

Secondly, SPMS have another role of clearing out damaged or dead tissue and cells that are associated with any acute inflammation (eg- when a wound starts to heal) and just by clearing out these dead cells and tissue this actually switches off that inflammation response so that it can’t move into a more chronic pattern and keep on going.

And where there is already some tissue damage within an autoimmune disease, for example in polyarthritis or inflammatory bowel disease, these spms actually help in the repair of tissue which also helps restore function to that particular area as well as help bring back balance.


Lastly they can actually play a role in helping to reduce infection that can be one of the underlying but often undiagnosed triggers when it comes to autoimmune disease. And just on another note, these spms can significantly reduce chronic pain that is associated with these inflammation patterns so that’s one more good thing to note

 

So we can see that these Spms are doing a powerful and essential job in any inflammatory issue but particularly when  it comes to autoimmunity. So where does my dog get these from you ask? spms are derived from essential fatty acids, primarily omega-3 fatty acids although a small amount does come from omega 6. SO that means they come predominantly from fish oil. Now I hear you say, I have been giving my dog fish oil as part of the treatment to help with their autoimmune and its has helped a  bit or maybe you haven’t noticed much change at all??? Some of this comes down the the quality of the product you are using along with the dose. But other times it can be that your dog is having trouble metabolising these fish oils so that the body can use them. This is more often the case in dogs that have had autoimmune and other health issues over long periods of time, have an inadequate diet, are older or are over weight.


Regardless, giving fish oil is still important in regards to providing some spms as welll as general antiinflammatory support and I would be using a general dose of 500-1500mg daily depending on your dogs weight and situation, but when it comes to autoimmunity for many dogs are more specific concentration of these may be needed. There are some supplements available on the market that provide this high spm concentration still coming from fish oils.


So for dogs with that chronic inflammatory pattern a supplement form of spms can be highly beneficial in not only dampening down and switching off this chronic pattern of inflammation but subsequently helping then to start to balance out this immune response. When giving a combination of general fish oil supplement and an spm supplement always check with your vet or practiitioner to see what the right dose etc is for your dog and their situation. As SPM supplements are stronger than regular fish oil you would need to start slowly and potentially use half the dose you would with a regular fish oil supplement. For best results these both need to be given over  a 3 month period. And if you are interested in finding out the supplements I generally recommend to my clients feel free to reach out to me – my contact details are below. I can also help you with dosages.

 

While the research on spms is still relatively new we are seeing some amazing results in the way that they can really help as part of reversing autoimmune disease by establishing a normal healthy inflammation pathway, helping the immune system to rebalance and healing and clearing out damaged tissues.

 

 

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