A New Approach to Preventing Inflammatory Disease in Horses
A NEW APPROACH TO PREVENTING INFLAMMATORY DISEASE IN HORSES
Mushroom Matrix Inc., Oceanside, California
A growing body of medical information and clinical data indicates the value of a nutritional approach toward treating disease and illness in both humans and animals. In particular, recent research indicates a link between inflammation and disease, examples being laminitis in horses, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and even early aging in humans. Research on the impacts of nutrition has shown that the food matrix (composite of naturally occurring food components) can aid in reducing chronic inflammatory diseases. Moreover, much of this research also reveals that a nutritional approach to treating illness and disease is less effective when it involves a single, bioactive substance or nutrient rather than a whole food. It is quite logical that a horse or human, a complete biological system, would obtain the greatest nutritional therapeutic value from consuming a whole food that contains a complete interactive set of bioactive agents.
Mushroom Matrix Inc and Marvin S. Hausman MD have undertaken several studies examining the impact of a whole food on the health of horses. A medicinal mushroom-based nutritional supplement, called the Mushroom Matrix™, was used. Mushrooms were chosen because they are a complex whole food consisting of a wide array of bioactive enzymes and nutrients. Several clinical studies have been completed and the initial results indicate a positive impact of the Matrix on horse health.
Results of Recent Studies Using the Matrix™
In one study using the Matrix, elderly horses with moderate to severe gum disease were given nutritional supplementation with a natural, organic mushroom complex composed of unique combinations of specific exotic mushroom species. Positive results were seen after only 30-60 days of supplementation as seen below. It is widely accepted that periodontal disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in small animal and human dentistry. The same is true in horses. Periodontitis (peri = around, odont = tooth, -itis = inflammation) refers to a number of inflammatory diseases affecting the tissues that surround and support the teeth. Periodontitis involves progressive loss of the alveolar bone around the teeth and may eventually lead to the loosening and subsequent loss of teeth if left untreated. Periodontitis is caused by a convergence of bacteria that adhere to and grow on the tooth's surfaces, along with an overly aggressive immune system response against these bacteria.
The significance of oral inflammatory disease goes way beyond the mouth; the gums are a “barometer or window” of what is going on elsewhere in the body. At this point in time most periodontal disease data has come from human studies; however, the mechanism of action crosses most species lines. The impact of chronic inflammatory disease on mammalian health is especially emphasized by the following human data:
- Gingivitis occurs in 60-75 percent of pregnant women.
- Periodontal therapy reduced pre-term birth and low birth weight infant rates by 68 percent in women with pregnancy associated gingivitis.
- Research published in the June 2008 issue of the journal Lancet Oncology found that those who had gum disease had a 14 percent higher risk of cancer compared to those with no history of gum disease.
- The risk varied from cancer to cancer. Gum disease appeared to increase the risk for lung cancer by 36 percent, kidney cancer by 49 percent, pancreatic cancer by 54 percent, and for white blood leukemia by 30 percent.
The Matrix represents a concentrated potent combination of mushrooms that can be given to horses as a powder in supplement form. Ten (10) grams can be easily given per day and the physiologic impact measured. The horse gum disease study, which, as previously mentioned, is a highly visible form of the body’s response to inflammation. The results, so far, reveal the ability of the mushroom biomatrix to address inflammatory gum disease, and, in essence, this physiologic response should be going on in other bodily tissues such as joints, muscles, gastrointestinal tract, etc.
Matrix Blood Studies
The following data on levels of hemoglobin within red blood cells and the numbers of white blood cells was obtained from data accumulated by Carl Nafzger on race horses within his barn. Carl Nafzger is the trainer for Street Sense, the horse that won the 2007 Kentucky Derby, and this horse was on the Matrix at the time of his victory.
White Blood Cell Results in 36 Horses
These percentage increases in total numbers of white blood cells could help explain the chronic gum disease response.
Red Blood Cell Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration
The percentage increases were quite dramatic considering the changes after only 30 days of the Matrix.
Increased Oxidative Capacity with the Matrix
In another study involving horses, a technique called AOP-490, manufactured by Oxis International, was used to measure the antioxidant capacity of blood before and after supplementation with the Mushroom Matrix. A clinical study was performed involving 14 healthy, one-year-old Thoroughbred racehorses from Cobra Farms in Lexington, Kentucky – seven males and seven females – were fed 10 grams of Mushroom Matrix Equine Calm Performance powder daily for four weeks in addition to their normal diet. Plasma and serum samples were drawn and kept refrigerated until the Acute Oxidative Potential (AOP) biomarker assay was performed on all serum samples. The horses were examined for any physical problems or side effects at the start and at the conclusion of the study. The chart below shows the results. The mean increase in AOP in all horses was 16.45 percent.
These equine studies represent an exciting first step in showing the ability of nutritional mushroom supplements to correct cellular imbalance and to control reactive oxygen species (ROS). Mushroom Matrix ™ organic nutritional food supplements contain bioactive components that can actually increase the antioxidative/anti-inflammatory capacity of mammalian blood. Oxidative stress/ROS are associated with chronic inflammation and many disease states - cancer, viral and bacterial infections, gastrointestinal disorders, arthritis, laminitis and perhaps even endothelial fragility with respiratory bleeding, to name a few. These studies suggest that proper nutritional supplementation with whole organic foods, such as Mushroom Matrix™ powders, may decrease the incidence and/or severity of these disease states.
There is little doubt, but that, mushrooms and/or their bioactive matrix, represent one of the best whole natural foods to prevent and/or treat inflammatory disorders. Mushroom species have survived for hundreds of millions of years and may represent one of the best balanced evolutionary biologic systems on the planet. It is also possible that the diet of most mammals may have become nutritionally deficient because of environmental factors and domestication. Moreover, the "humble" mushroom may represent an entirely overlooked nutritionally important biologic organism.