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"The Thinking Person's Pet Food"™ – Since 1979

Grain Free

Question:
Question:
#1. you claim to have NO starch but then in your ingredients it says you have proteins from potatoes!? HUH?!

#2. you provide no evidence of starches being more harmful than grains. No references, only fluff about your superior product. NEITHER grains or starches are suitable for dogs in my personal opinion, but there is undeniable and substantial evidence suggesting the health problems grains (and more specifically gluten) cause in humans. Using nothing more than logic, you can assume animals are the same (evolving over millions of years and softens only being around for about 150years).

To my point, back your claims with evidence and don't mislead the public as if grains are NOT a problem. Taking the next step and removing starch as well is fantastic! But you did not remove the grains and your claims with this dogfood will sadly never come to fruition as long as the gluten is present.

Answer:
First, starch is a carbohydrate; it is biochemically totally unlike a protein. The proteins used in Epigen™ are extracted from the starches. Epigen™ has no starches--that is the point of the product.

Second, pet foods that claim to be "grain-free" actually have a nutritionally inferior substitute such as potato, peas, buckwheat, tapioca, etc., and therefore are still laden with starches. Starches are the primary problem in pet foods that cause serious health consequences.

If you visit the Epigen™ website, you will see we have posted over 100 references which provides the evidence you claim we are missing: http://www.wysongepigen.net/solutions.php?d=98.

Please see these links for additional information about grains in pet foods:

Starch Free™ vs. "Grain-Free": http://www.wysongepigen.net/Epigen%20Flyer.pdf

Grain-Free Dog Food – An Examination

Regarding starch sources in pet foods: Are grains healthy?

Regarding grain-free pet foods: Are grain free pet foods the way to health?

Regarding the presence or absence of certain ingredients: How pet food companies play the ingredient game

Please follow this link for more information about allergies and pets: http://www.wysong.net/pet-health-and-nutrition/the-food-allergies-are-cured-myth.php

Also, consider signing up for our free program, The 100 Pet Health Truths. The 100 Pet Health Truths will equip you to become a discerning and educated pet owner. We have condensed Dr. Wysong's 30 years of health wisdom into 100 short and easy messages enhanced with fun graphics and videos. You will also receive coupons totaling $100 for free Wysong products interspersed throughout the program.

Question:
I appreciate your reply, and I agree that complex carbohydrates (starches) are problematic...but so are grains. In my personal opinion however, if you subtract a protein from a starch/grain source, you are not bypassing the problem. It will still be problematic. So the question begs, "which is worse? Starch or grains?". Because you have to almost have a trace of one or the other to even MAKE dry dogfood. And personally, I'll take grain free with sweet potatoes every time.

It's not your product that I have an issue with (other than the wheat extract). It's the Sloan/saying "grains aren't the problem, starch is". That is a fallacy. Both are problematic and it is grains (more specifically gluten) that is the premiere catalyst for cancer, auto immune disease, and obesity.

Also, gluten is a protein found in wheat (is that what your extracting in the ingredients?).

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gluten

Answer:
We are aware of the potential problems with gluten, and virtually any other food component. But toxicity must be understood in terms of dose.

See: Toxin Paranoia.

Wysong products, many of which contain grains, have been fed to hundreds of thousands of animals through multiple generations. The results are health, not disease and toxicity. See Testimonials. Actual experience, as we have 35 years of, always defeats an argument.

Our point is that starches and grains are problematic when fed in excess (grains are predominately starch). A reasonable person must agree that to specifically promote grains as the problem, which is the entire basis for the "grain free" marketing fad, is disingenuous. Please review the links provided in my last email.

With respect, you say that it is your personal opinion that the protein isolates extracted from vegetables and grains will cause health problems. The science and research on these ingredients predominantly indicates otherwise. In addition, our inclusion of active enzymes, such as prolyl endoprotease, helps denature the tertiary and secondary structure of potentially problematic proteins such as in gluten.

The belief held for 60 years was that grain/starch is needed to manufacture a dry kibble. Our R&D and the Epigen™ line proves otherwise.

We contend that starch in general has been the real, foremost problem with kibble pet foods, and not grains. You are misinterpreting what we are saying. Again, grains are predominantly starches, so when we say starches are the problem and not grains we mean that to pull grains out of the larger category of starches and cast them as the problem is false. This is the fallacy upon which the "grain free" movement is based.

Nutritionally speaking, all of the health maladies you list are encouraged most by a starch based diet. This is true for both humans and companion animals.

For further information, please review our website and the links previously provided. Subscribing to the 100 Pet Health Truth Program will also be helpful.

Question:
I appreciate your reply, and I agree that complex carbohydrates (starches) are problematic...but so are grains. In my personal opinion however, if you subtract a protein from a starch/grain source, you are not bypassing the problem.

Answer:
Depends upon what problem referred to. Starches and sugars are the problem that epigen™ addresses. See the scientitific references here regarding the serious impact of carbohydrates on health (http://www.wysongepigen.net/solutions.php).

It will still be problematic.

The only potential problem with protein from grains is allergy/sensitivity, which can occur with protein from any source.

So the question begs, "which is worse? Starch or grains?". Because you have to almost have a trace of one or the other to even MAKE dry dog food.

That is not true with Epigen™.


And personally, I'll take grain free with sweet potatoes every time.

We would argue that carnivores are more adapted to protein than carbohydrate, as found in sweet potatoes.

Question:
I hope you are not offended or overwhelmed by my emails, because I thank you whole heartedly for engaging in this conversation. I am always willing to challenge my own beliefs and knowledge, and further understanding/knowledge is well worth the time spent in my humble opinion. So thank you!

We've gotten spread out on a few topics, so Ill try to consolidate a few points:

- I agree that starches are also a problem. I just believe it is unwise to 'cast' grains as not a problem in advertising (but I understand the business side of trying to set yourself apart). Regardless of the classification (how much of a grain is a starch), grains are problematic and not intended for consumption...EVER, not just if you have allergies (again, my humble opinion).

Answer:
From a purest perspective using archetypal design as the measure, we agree. However, grains are certainly not all bad. As Dr. Wysong has pointed out, their agriculture and storage capabilities are the very reason civilization became possible.

So we agree in principle that both of these are problematic, but I disagree with dismissing grains in the advertising. It comes off as you dont feel grains are a problem at all (which from our conversation I know isnt the case). To promote grains as THE ONLY problem IS disingenuous...and so is ONLY promoting starch.



Agreed.

- Everyone/thing is allergic to Gluten (again in my opinion).

That cannot be supported by fact, anymore than arguing that any food, even mother's milk, is allergenic.

Toxicity levels are of course a factor (I will concede that). One person/dog/animal will react more/less severely to exposure than another, but at the base of the problem, gluten from grains contributes to leaky gut at some point...period. Regardless of whether someone/thing is more sensitive to it or not. Leaky gut over time leads to malnutrition, inflammation, auto immune diseases (such as diabetes, skin irritations, thyroid problems, MS, etc), and cancer. ANYTHING that causes irritation within the gut will eventually leads to such problems. Starches and Grains specifically accelerate this process do to their HIGH glycemic load.



In a very indirect sense perhaps.

Controlling Insulin sensitivity and general inflammation are key (just a statement of general health, Im sure you can agree as well). But there are exceptions to the "starch" rule in my opinion. Roots and tubers (sweet potatoes, yucca root for example) are simple starches and CAN be easily digested by humans that do not already show signs of auto Immune disease.



But they present a glycemic challenge as well and contain their own set of toxins, e.g. solanine in potatoes, hydrogen cyanide in tapioca, etc.

Not sure about dogs to be honest, but I would assume since we are both omnivores (because we are, dogs eat fruits, grasses, etc., albeit they would ONLY eat meat if given the choice, they are also evolutionary scavengers and will adapt to food that is available), we would follow a similar (not exact) path to health. I AM only assuming sweat potatoes are healthy for dogs based on this fact. Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.



As Dr. Wysong proves, taking adaptation to mean evolution is not supported by science or logic. See AsIfThinkingMatters.com, his Solving The Big Questions book. Creatures are pretty much locked into their genetic programs and only degrade (second law) from there, not ascend in complexity.

- Proteins extracted from grains and starches still makes no sense to me (maybe I have to read up on this more). The protein in grains (gluten) is the whole problem in the first place (again, regardless of how you cut it up as a grain/starch). Just extracting a component from a problematic food does not dismiss that the possibility remains for it to cause irritation/inflammation. For example, extracting whey protein from milk for post workout protein shakes does not mean you do not see similar inflammatory response and insulin release from ingesting the shake as you would regular milk (because you do). If the lactose is not present, those who are sensitive to lactose CAN drink it, but it still doesnt make it compatible to our natural diet or "healthy".



We understand and agree with the theory, but the practice does not bear this out. Again, we have 35 years, and hundreds of thousands of animals through multiple generations that prove otherwise in practice.

- I am not educated AT ALL in how dogfood is made, so I will concede your point. All I know is it is NOT a natural food source, but because of its convenience it has become the STAPLE. And I for one am very excited for this grain free/starch free movement with dogfood. 30 years of experience is great! Personally I have two dogs that I have feed grain free dogfood (taste of the wild) to for the last year, and their skin irritations, excessive shedding, smell, dirty ears, tartar, and gas HAVE ALL disappeared (except for the gas sometimes, haha). One of my dogs nails were also very brittle and easily splintered. They are now strong and healthy. This is the only experience I can pull from and my constant search for knowledge and something possibly even better for my pups is what led me to you. So again, thank you for the conversation!



That is pretty much what we have heard from people through the decades. Dr. Wysong concedes there are a multitude of natural and unnatural foods that can yield health. Rotation and variety are key.

You do not have to apologize for anything, you have written very kind and intelligent letters. I think your mind would delight in the two books on the site mentioned above.


Question:
Customer is worried about bloat and dry foods. She has large breed dogs that are prone to bloat. She also mentioned that she believes grains cause bloat.

Answer:
First, as mentioned over the phone, we haven't had any reports of bloat problems with any of our products, including the dry TNT™ (true non-thermally processed) diets. There are many factors that can come into play with bloat. Feeding smaller, more frequent meals is perhaps one of the best ways to prevent bloat. And as always, Dr. Wysong recommends following the Optimal Health Program™ for the best health and disease prevention.

If you remain convinced that dry foods cause problems, that can easily be remedied by adding water to them.

You might also want to review these links in regards to grains:

Grain-Free Dog Food – An Examination

Starch Free™ vs. "Grain-Free": http://www.wysongepigen.net/Epigen%20Flyer.pdf

Consider signing up for our free program, The 100 Pet Health Truths. The 100 Pet Health Truths will equip you to become a discerning and educated pet owner. We have condensed Dr. Wysong's 35 years of health wisdom into 100 short and easy messages enhanced with fun graphics and videos. You will also receive coupons totaling $100 for free Wysong products interspersed throughout the program.


Question:
I have a question about your food. Specifically Wysong Epigen Grain-Free Original Chicken Formula Dry Dog & Cat Food.

I was taught that dogs and cats had very different dietary needs. How are they both able to thrive on the same food?

Also, if your food is so good, how are you able to sell it for so cheap? I've seen it for low as $16 for an 8lb bag. That's very cheap for high quality food.

Answer:
First, please understand that Epigen is not a "grain-free" food in the sense that others in the market are. We have addressed the fundamental problem of starch, not just from grains. Others have not.

See:

Epigen: http://www.wysongepigen.net/

Starch free vs. Grain free: http://www.wysongepigen.net/Epigen%20Flyer.pdf

For your first question, please see this link: http://www.wysong.net/pet-health-and-nutrition/pet-foods-for-both-canine-and-feline.php.

As for pricing, Wysong manufactures its own foods and does not pay an outside toll manufacturer. Also, marketing costs--which make up the majority of many brand's pricing--are kept down. Thus, ours are the highest quality foods in the market but at a reasonable price.

Please see:

Truth 54, Don't Pay For Perception: http://wysongpethealth.net/100PetHealthTruths/?truth=54\

Wysong and Profit: http://www.wysong.net/pet-health-and-nutrition/wysong-and-profit.php

Consider signing up for Wysong's free program, The 100 Pet Health Truths. The 100 Pet Health Truths will equip you to become a discerning and educated pet owner. We have condensed Dr. Wysong's 30 years of health wisdom into 100 short and easy messages enhanced with fun graphics and videos. You will also receive coupons totaling $100 for free Wysong products interspersed throughout the program.