Linda Arndt ~ Canine Nutritional Consultant

Disease Prevention - What Part Do Enzymes Play

Whole Food Enzymes and the Role They Play in Preventing Disease.


In my 40 years of researching ways to divert disease and extend longevity for us and our pets, I have come to the conclusion that the basis of wellness is also made up of the same basic components that allow us to reverse disease.

I have developed the CORE 4 Philosophy, which is the basis for all of my Blackwatch Feed Programs, whether they are a program for daily maintenance (Puppy, Adults, Seniors) or for supporting the body when disease is a challenge ie: immune support, cancer, cardiac support, diabetics support, orthopedic support, kidney support etc.

There are 50 Blackwatch Feed Programs in all, to provide the body with support from whole functional foods. The good news time and experience has shown us that remarkable things can happen with the right functional foods. The bad thing is, I do not know if in my life time this holistic approach will become mainstream. Just recently I heard the word Probiotics mentioned on television, but that is a first because it was 28 years ago that I had written an article on the benefits of probiotics for helping to prevent bloat do to high systemic yeast/fungus levels in the gut.

Probiotics were common in agriculture (Fastrack), but not the companion industry or in human health. It took all those years for the word Probiotics to finally hit main stream American media. I remember my first yogurt was eaten in 1969 in San Francisco - it had not hit the midwest yet unless you were from an ethic background; Greek, Lebanese etc where yogurt was eating daily and cultures came from the old country when people migrated to America.

My Blackwatch Feed Programs are now 30+ years in use and it has been proven time and again, with these 4 critical elements in a daily diet, we can sustain wellness, divert serious health issues and in many instances reverse disease.

Four Components of Wellness

It is my belief that there are four critical elements of wellness. They are beneficial bacteria or probiotics & digestive enzymes - to break down the foods we consume and get the most out of the nutrients. This take the load off the pancreas so it does not have to make as many dietary enzymes. In acquired diabetes, our "store house" of enzymes is depleted - the panaceas is worn out.

Next is dietary enzymes - which are those "living components" from whole raw foods, which provide the body with the necessary nutrients to cleanse itself and prevent free radical damage at a cellular level. Free radicals cause premature aging and breakdown in the whole body system. I think of dietary enzymes as the "Hepa filter " for the whole body.

The last component is an oxygenating agent that is important in helping to keep healthy pH levels in the gut, and to keep pathogenic bacteria, virus, and fungi not wanting to stick around in your digestive track, because they don't like living in an environment where there is oxygen present.

That is my CORE 4 of wellness and at the end of this article I will tell you how to incorporate this into your own daily routine for you and for your pet.


In this article I want to focus on the importance of dietary enzymes and their ability to create the chemistry necessary to provide anti-oxidants, which are the neutralizing agents. In other words, free radicals (the bad guys) get gobbled up by the antioxidants (good guys) and this saves the body from premature aging and disease. I have concentrated my efforts in the area of dietary enzymes because of their powerful life force by making antioxidants.

In my previous articles I address the importance of enzymes (digestive and dietary) and how to re-introduce these vital catalyst from whole foods, back into our diet through whole food
phyto-chemicals; a variety of chemicals found in plants (flavonoids, carotenoids, ascorbates, pectins, isoterpenes, tocopherols and indoles ). These "phyto-chemicals" have amazing anti-oxidant properties and are critical in the prevention of disease.

The latest frontier in disease prevention is the use of whole foods, plants and the healing plant extracts they contain called phyto-chemicals. (Phyto means "plant" in Greek) and sometimes you will hear them refereed to as "phyto-foods". As Newsweek (April 25, 1994) reported in its cover story, "it is whole foods-especially fruits, vegetables and sprouts -that pack the disease-preventing wallop" this is because they harbor a whole mixture of compounds that we did not know existed until recently."

The research I have seen suggests "a diet of wholesome foods rich in phyto-chemicals may prevent disease." Science has identified hundreds of phyto-chemicals in fruits, vegetables, sprouted grains and sprouted legumes which have been associated with lowering blood cholesterol levels and lower incidence of cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Sprouted products are an excellent way to introduce these into your pet's diet.

Phyto-chemicals are in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage) called "indoles" have the potential, based on research, to prevent breast and uterine cancer and phyto-chemicals in sprouted legumes, soy, wheat, barley, peas, lentils, seeds are rich in isoflavones. In animal cancer studies isoflavones provided significant protection from tumors.

Q. As a dog owner or breeder, how can I incorporate phyto-chemicals into my animals diet

A. By adding dietary enzymes in the form of "sprouted materials" back into the diet.

For example wheat, barley, and soy sprouts (I am not referring to the soybean or wheat berry), but the sprouts of such foods, are an extremely beneficial whole foods with superior phyto-chemical anti-oxidant properties!

The soy sprouts in particular are the only ones that will modulate estrogens, so they are beneficial for getting bitches pregnant and regulating cycles (my own experience). I do not however suggest soy products even sprouts, for women that have been diagnosed with estrogen driven breast cancer. As a side note:

I used the soy sprouts for many years, but they prolonged my monthly cycles, until 63 years of age. So I switched to a barley sprout because I wanted the same antioxidant properties, without the estrogen influence.
The soy sprouts are the only ones that do effect estrogens.

The sprouting process which is often called "ingraining" activates the "life force" of the seed while the enzyme activity is greatly enhanced and the overall "energy of the seed" is dramatically increased. The harvesting of these sprouts has be be done at a very specific time in order to maximize the effectiveness of the life force within these sprouts. For example, the nutritional analysis of a wheat berry or the soy bean vs the soy sprout or the wheat sprout is as different as night and day - two very different nutritional analysis.

My Father's Personal Experience

I would like to share with you the story about my father, who was diagnosed with lung cancer at 87. He was not a candidate for surgery due to his congestive heart disease - a common condition at this age. His physicians wanted him to go through chemo and radiation but he refused. He was adamant about not wanting to prolong the inevitable and he did not want to be miserable, lose his appetite, weight and definitely not lose what hair he had left from the effects of chemo and radiation. I assured him that we could put together a supplement program that would support this experience and that he did not have to suffer.

So I called a network of individuals to get guidance on this matter. His program was as follows:

1). Probiotics (BacPak Plus) - 6 different beneficial bacteria, 2 micro encapsulated.

2). Digestive Enzymes - 4 which were included in the BacPakPlus

3) Dietary Enzymes - found in the Biopet Nzymes Capsules (soy sprouts) or Phyto Sprouts Plus .

4). Spark of Life - 68 micro minerals extracted from humaic shale, these are critical for the body's electrical/metabolic system. They run the power plant keep energy level up.

5). Oxygenator - an aqueous liquid, an anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal from sodium chlorite. - Ox-E-Drops

6). Tincture of Graviola to reduce tumors

NOTE: in pets we would use K-9 Immunity and K-9 Transfer Factor

Vitamin Routine:

Whole Food Vitamin Liquid
B- Complex 100mg - 200 mg daily for energy (NO YEAST IN IT)

Co-Q-10 in the form of Ubicquinol - 100 mg daily

He always ate his fruits and veggies and had 1 beer a day with a raw egg in it (I know I know..don't ask). And he really didn't vary from his diet, which he would cook a great deal. He always had his lumberjack breakfast of coffee, juice, toast with real butter and then eggs fried in butter and bacon or sausage grease after he fried the meat...this was every single morning.

He would drive himself to chemo and radiation treatments for 6 weeks, then stop and get chinese takeout or a pizza for him and my mother. He craved certain dishes - most of which were "german" in origin which meant lots of chicken noodles soup and dumplings, and we were astonished at his level of energy. He never skipped a beat, never lost any hair and never missed a single meal. Frankly, I never would have believed it if it were not my own father and I was witness to it. My mother jokingly referred to him as the energizer bunny.

My father died at 90+ years of age, due to congestive heart failure. Although I already knew the power of whole foods for healing and preventing, I never understood it's importance, my very core, until I watched my own father's journey.

Would this work for everyone ..we have no way of knowing. I have known of one other individual, a friend with Pancreatic cancer. He had a large tumor removed and was given two months. Together, with his wife and a network of professionals we designed him a nutritional program similar to my fathers. This man is now going on 6 years of being cancer free, runs marathons, works full time and is enjoying life.

The following is a list of the benefits of phyto-chemicals:

~ Antioxidant enzyme compounds protect cells from free radical damage which is believed to be responsible for initiating many forms of cancer as well as premature aging.

~ Breast cancer studies in laboratory animals have shown compounds can inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells.

~ Cholesterol lowering studies show cholesterol lowering properties.

~ Colon cancer studies show a lower rate of colon cancer.

~ Hip fracture preliminary studies suggest they may help retain bone mass.

~ Hot flash special compounds called phyto estrogens may help with reduction of hot flashes. (soy sprouts).

~ Immunity studies show antioxidants boost the immune system.

~ Lung cancer studies linked phyto-chemical consumption to lower rates of lung cancer.

~ Prostate cancer studies show compounds can inhibit growth of prostate cancer cells in lab cultures


First some background on anti-oxidants and their counter parts called oxygen "free radicals". What do oxygen "free-radicals" and car exhaust have in common? They are both toxic by-products produced by the production of energy. Energy is necessary to make both the car and the human/animal body function.

The fuel may be different, one is oxygen the other is gasoline, but the end result is the same. Both produce energy and both have a toxic waste by-products from that energy production. "Oxygen free radicals" (toxic by-products) are the bad guys and anti-oxidants are the good guys because they move around the cells of the body and gobble up all the free radicals. Think of these toxins as "body rust" and anti-oxidants are the rust inhibitors. Free radicals are what make us age and eventually die. Anti-oxidant enzyme supplementation can help considerably by:

~ Aiding the prevention of aging and diseases such as cancer prevention and other debilitating illnesses

~ Reduces the negative effects of cancer therapies (see example above)

~ Reduces the negative effects of anesthetics after surgery

~ Speeds repair of tissues and bone due to surgery/trauma

~ Boosts the immune system

~ Retards paradentia disease and the prevention of heart disease - (editorial comment: the gums and heart muscle are related which is why keeping your teeth and gums healthy prevents many heart problems. This is true for dogs)

~ Works on soft tissues and is great for reducing allergy problems.
Note: I no longer have hay fever because of dietary enzyme.

~ Flushing toxins (chemicals, pesticides, etc.) from the system.

~ Aids in reproductive problems, regulating cycles and problems with infertility and sterility (humans and animals). (soy sprouts)

Note: Anti-oxidants are a critical part of the after care from bloat/torsion or spleen surgery because it helps to:

~ Minimize the side effects and after effects of anesthetics

~ Speeds healing of soft tissue

~ Reduces the inflammation and soreness of soft tissue

~ Prevents "reperfusion injury" after any surgery

"Reperfusion injury" is a condition where by toxins, free radicals or oxygen by-products, are released into the system of the animal after surgery trauma and anesthetics, often causing death.

According to a study done at Purdue University, the majority of dogs lost after torsion surgery die from reperfusion injury due to this release of toxins in the body causing heart arrhythmia. Anti-oxidant enzymes such as those contained in Biopet Nzymes is one way to help support the system in hopes of preventing "reperfusion injury". Even though torsion is an emergency surgery, start the animal on this product as soon as possible right after surgery.

This is not a drug but a food concentrate and will not conflict with any medication the animal is on at the time. If you have an emergency surgery of any kind the sooner you can start the animal on it the better. Also, for elective surgery such as ear cropping and potential vaccine reactions, we start puppies from weaning and leave them on Phyto Sprouts Plus (which is a product designed by Dr. Wagner 25+ yrs ago or Biopet Nzymes until all inoculations are given to minimize our chances of vaccine reactions.

The Reintroduction of Whole Living Foods to the Diet

These past few years I have worked to incorporate whole living foods back into my animals diets without disrupting the commercial foods. My lifestyle is such that I am unwilling to feed my dogs as if they were living in the wild.

This means incorporating other things into the commercial diets in order to put back whole living food without significantly changing the protein/calorie content or disrupting the balance of calcium/phosphorus ratio of the food.
Storage, heating, processing, cooking are all enemies of dietary enzymes because they can kill or alter the effectiveness of them and of valuable nutrients, probiotic cultures (friendly bacteria) normally found intact in fresh whole raw foods. Therefore, I have found ways to reintroduce whole living foods into the diet in the form of:

~ Vitamin C (non acid type)

~ Fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, sprouts

~ Cereal grasses (barley and wheat)

~ Digestive Enzymes (facilitators of body chemistry and digestion)

~ Dietary enzymes

~ Probiotics (friendly yogurt type culture)

~ Herbs/Botanicals

In today's world, people are busy and like myself, I have worked over the years to develop Feed Programs that are easily manageable and work will kibbles, homemade diets, totally raw diets and grain free diets. Regardless of what the companies tell you none are 100% complete. The term "100% complete" means a food must meet minimum AAFCO's nutrient standards. It is true, most of the top natural pet foods exceed the basic minimum AAFCO minimum standards, which is why the animals do so well on these natural holistic diets.

There has not been enough research done to determine the maximums levels of many nutrients need to be, and what "other" unknown nutritional factors that are found in nature that might to necessary to include in our diets. I know in many of the better foods on the market they ignore the use of "bio available" trace minerals and lack the 60+ micro minerals which are critical for the body's (electrical) system (endocrine system) which is the power plant that runs the body.


This is how an animal would normally get these whole living foods if it hunted and scavenged. Let's say our dog hunts and kills an animal. He would then set about to gut it and consume the innards where nutrients and minerals are concentrated in the organs (pancreas+digestive enzymes, liver stores vitamin C). He would consume the predigested vegetable matter from the stomach (fruits, grasses, grains, veggies) and intestines (tripe); home of intestinal flora and other enzymes. This is all followed by consuming larger muscle mass and then the bones. Naturally some hide, fur or feathers (fiber) would be consumed in the process.


Like everyone else, I am a very busy woman yet I want the best for my dogs. I do not personally feed the BARF diet but I do feed a raw component by using:

1) 10% - 20% component of Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Raw (also for variety) alternated with:
2) 10-20% of Diets Raw Diet -Frozen or Diets Freeze Dried Nuggets

Along with a holistic kibble and one of my CORE 4 SUPPLEMENT KITS

List of better foods.



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