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I first heard about Ancestral Supplements from a friend on the east coast who has had trouble sourcing organ meat and began using Ancestral Supplements instead. Out of curiosity, I've asked her questions about the supplements a few times over the past year and one thing that resonated with me is the reminder that we, humans, don't eat enough organ meat. When I think of the last time I ate organ meat, I honestly couldn't tell you. It's been at least 20 years. I used to love liver and onions and would make them as a treat for myself. It's a smelly meal to cook, so I didn't make it often.
But now – when I think of organ meat, I think of raw feeding.
Why Organ Meat is Important for Dogs (and Humans)
Today, those of us who eat meat, primarily eat muscle meat. Organ meat (or offal) is considered either a delicacy or food set aside for the animals (aka byproducts). But this wasn't always the case. Before humans started eating primarily processed foods, we ate the entire animal – head to tail. There are some cultures that still eat the entire animal, but the Western world seems to have forgotten about the benefits of organ meat.
The reason why we should add organ meat back into our diet is that…
- most of the nutrients are derived from organ meat
- organ meat is a great source of protein, which is key for building and maintaining muscle mass
- because organ meat is an excellent source of protein, adding it to our diet helps us feel fuller longer
- organ meat is a great source of iron; I'm anemic and plant-based iron and iron supplements don't cut it for me
- a nutrient that many people don't get enough of is choline, which supports brain, muscle, and liver health
- because people aren't eating organ meat, it's not considered valuable so we can source it at an affordable price
The more I read about the benefits of eating organ meat, the more I'm reminded of why I feed my dogs a raw food diet. Raw feeders can list out the benefits of raw feeding at the drop of a hat, yet, we don't realize (or at least I didn't) that we can enjoy the same benefits by returning to our ancestral diet.
An Alternative to Fresh Organ Meat
While I can source organ meat for my dogs easily, the only options available for me (the human in the house) are chicken liver, hearts, and gizzards. I love liver and onions, but out of respect for my better half, I don't cook it. I've never tried chicken hearts and don't plan to; I often stock up on them and make dehydrated treats for the dogs. And I enjoy chicken gizzards from time to time, but these are mostly for the dogs too.
I thought about visiting my local Asian market to take advantage of the variety of fresh foods available, but, when I think about it, I don't want to cook organ meat. Johan won't eat it and while I could share it with my dogs, I found an easier way to add organ meat to my diet…Ancestral Supplements.
What are Ancestral Supplements?
Ancestral Supplements is a Texas company that produces a high-quality line of organ-based supplements for humans, although we can give them to our dogs too. When I was doing my homework, I was impressed with their About Page and the story of the owner's sons, who were the inspiration for the company. After embracing an ancestral diet of “organic, pasture-raised and wild-caught nose-to-tail foods with varied organic, in-season fruits and veggies,” the owner's sons went from being allergic to everything to being in the 95th percentile for academics and physical fitness.
So I grabbed my wallet.
The Ancestral Supplements I Ordered, And Why
I purchased my first container when I ran out of digestive enzymes for Rodrigo and the next order wasn't arriving for two days. In my search for an alternative, I came across a listing for pancreas, which I can't source. While I wasn't sure if this supplement could be an alternative to Rodrigo's enzymes, I thought he could benefit from the supplement.
After reading the reviews and realizing that the pancreas and spleen (a separate supplement) would help my anemia, I placed an order for two containers.
But I didn't stop looking. There are so many options available that I decided to email the company to get recommendations as well as dosage amounts for my dogs and they delivered amazing customer service.
The following are the supplements me and the dogs are taking…
1 – Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Beef Organs (Desiccated)
As I did more homework, the fact that I don't eat any organ meat was the reason why I added the beef organ supplement to my shopping cart. This supplement contains liver, heart, kidney, pancreas, and spleen. Everything I need. I started with one pill daily and will increase the dosage weekly until I reach the right amount for myself.
- are nutrient-rich
- support liver health
- contain naturally occurring coenzyme Q10
- support heart health
- regulate blood pressure
- support kidney health
- aid in the body's detox
- boost the immune system
- supports gut health.
2 – Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Bone and Marrow
While I could benefit from this supplement, I ordered it for all of my dogs. They started with one pill daily, which I'm going to increase slowly until I reach each dog's dosage (one capsule per 8-12 pounds of body weight). Because I feed a raw food diet that already contains organ meat, I don't plan to work my way up to 6-7 capsules daily.
- contains whole bone extract (bone, marrow, cartilage, and collagen)
- supports bone and joint health
- supports dental health
- boosts the immune system
3 – Ancestral Supplements Bovine Tracheal Cartilage (with Liver)
I ordered this supplement for Rodrigo (senior dog) and Scout (cancer survivor) to keep them healthy.
- supports healing
- boosts the immune system
- supports joint health
4 – Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Thymus Extract (Glandular)
I ordered this supplement for Rodrigo (allergies) and Scout (cancer survivor) to keep them healthy.
- boosts the immune system
- aids with allergies and inflammation
5 – Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Pancreas
I ordered the pancreas for Rodrigo (exocrine pancreatic insufficiency). I also give it to Scout to support his gut health.
- supports gut/digestive health
- provides proteolytic enzymes (lipase, protease, trypsin and amylase)
- supports pancreas health with lipase, protease, trypsin, and amylase)
- improves digestion and nutrient absorption
- may support pancreatic reserves*
6 – Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Beef Spleen (Desiccated)
I originally purchased this one for myself, but I'm using the Beef Organs in its place. I plan to give it to Rodrigo, at a lower dose than recommended.
- supports spleen health
- boosts the immune system; helps deal with allergies
- reduces inflammation
- supports blood health
- great source of iron (5 x's more Heme iron than liver)
Ancestral Supplements I Plan to Order and Why
I've been taking Ancestral Supplements for a couple of weeks now and I feel great. The owner suggested that I stick with one supplement and add more down the line. This will allow me to find the right dosage for myself and identify what's working and what's not working quickly. If I go crazy and start taking several s supplements at once, I won't know which one is working and which one isn't.
So, after my first order, I continued doing research and made a list of supplements that I'd like to try down the line.
Ancestral Supplements Wild Caught Fish Eggs
Fish is a regular part of my diet and I feed fish to my dogs regularly. But I once saw a raw food bowl with fish roe and I've always been curious about feeding fish eggs to my dogs. Fish roe is a great source of Vitamin D, which our dogs need to get through diet, and it's a great source of B-12, which supports cognitive health.
This is a great supplement if you have trouble sourcing quality fish for your dogs. Personally, I no longer add fish oil to my dogs' diet because I have access to fish. My dogs regularly enjoy sardines, mackerel, trout, and salmon. But if my fish connection dries up, it would be cool to have a superior alternative.
- excellent source of Omega 3 fatty acids, Vitamins D, K2, A, and B12
- supports cognitive (brain) health
- supports heart health
- decreases inflammation throughout the body
- Ancestral Supplements' fish roe is sourced from New Zealand to ensure a higher quality
- Ancestral Supplement's fish roe is completely free of hormones, pesticides, and GMOs
- this fish roe supplement is freeze dried to preserve essential nutrients and co-factors, encapsulated with absolutely no filler or flow agents, and third party tested for purity to meet our high quality standards
Ancestral Supplements Grass Fed Brain (with Liver)
I feed pork brains to my dogs because I believe that like corrects like – so, to boost joint health, we feed joints, to boost liver health, we feed liver, and to boost cognitive health, we feed brain. Cue the zombies. I prefer the idea of this supplement over feeding pork brains because of the reputation of this company and its commitment to quality sourcing. So I think I'll give this a try down the line.
- supports cognitive health, memory, and mood
- promotes cell health and apoptosis
Other Ancestral Supplements Available
All of the following supplements are sourced from grass-fed beef:
- Intestines with Tripe
- Gall Bladder
- Beef Eye
- Pure Marrow
- Living Bone
Before You Order Tons of Supplements…
The more I read about Ancestral Supplements, the more I want to order, but it's important not to go crazy.
- giving our dogs too many supplements at once will result in diarrhea and loose stool
- giving our dogs too many supplements at once will make it difficult to figure out the appropriate dosage
- giving our dogs too many supplements at once will make it difficult to tie any benefits we see to a specific supplement and dosage
So, while I want to place an order for the following supplements, I know that it's not a good idea at this time because it's too much too soon and I don't want my dogs' meals to be full of capsules.
- intestines/green tripe (gut health)
- colostrum (healing, cellular repair)
- placenta (highly nutritious protein, alleviates menopause symptoms in women)
- blood (cellular, heart, and immune system health),