Velvet Antler – A Gift From Nature

Canadian Elk and Deer Farmer Magazine, Late Summer Edition

A recently published booklet, titled Velvet Antler A Gift From Nature, was co authored by Dietary Technologist Cindy Ewashkiw and University of Alberta Professor of Nursing D1: Marion Allen.

What benefits can be expected?

Though investigation has only just begun in North America, research findings and medical accounts from Asia and New Zealand are already convincing. The reports suggest that velvet antler stimulates the body’s metabolism and protects and restores damaged organ tissue by accelerating healing. Velvet antler is also thought to help the body battle invaders that produce inflammation by increasing phagocytic functions. Phagocytic cells, such as white blood cells, surround, eat, and digest cell waste and microorganisms. There is also some suggestion that blood pressure is lowered with velvet antler consumption and enhanced thyroid function. Velvet antler has gonadotrophis functions, which means it enhances the hormone that causes the testes and ovaries to do their work. Historical accounts from Korea refer to velvet antler being used for infertility, miscarriage prevention, and helping pregnant women have an easier delivery. Research findings, clinical trials, and anecdotal evidence certainly demonstrate the value of velvet antler for health issues. Four key areas of investigation as to the effects of velvet antler are: immune system, energy and stamina, arthritis and inflammation, and the aging process.

Help for the Immune System

The human body has its own internal healing and protection mechanism called the immune system. It fights off invaders caused by disease, stress, poor nutrition, meager living habits, and drugs. Some common signs of a weakened immune system are fatigue, listessness, continuous infections, and slow healing. 7 Having and maintaining a strong immune system is essential to good health. Eating sensibly, getting proper rest, and exercising are all very important factors in staying healthy. Think of your immune system as your own little internal army. Tiny soldiers are fighting off any invaders that dare to enter their territory. The stronger the soldiers are in that army, the better the chances are of stopping invaders before they can cause any damage. This is why constantly nurturing and supporting the immune system is so important in staying healthy. Researchers in New Zealand investigated velvet antler’s effect on human white blood cells because of its long history of being taken for immune system support. Studies demonstrated that aqueous extracts of velvet antler were highly potent in causing an increase in human white blood cell count. 8 This, of course, is a good thing as white blood cells are one of the immune system’s first lines of defense when invaders come attacking.

Increasing Energy and Stamina

Athletes, who are in strength training programs, often seek effective nutritional supplementation programs. One such supplement may be velvet antler because of its excellent amino acid composition and mineral content.9 Fourteen different essential and nonessential amino acids are available in velvet antler. Velvet antler has been shown to have performance enhancing effects in both humans and animals based on the results of numerous studies. For example, research was done in Russia in which anabolic agents known to improve performance and muscular strength in athletes were analyzed. When studies using velvet antler were done, it showed that kayakers, weightlifters, bodybuilders and power lifters all increased both muscular and nerve strength. 12 Easing the Symptoms of Arthritis and Other Inflammatory Disorders Rheumatoid arthritis is a disorder resulting in chronic inflammation of the joints, tissue around the joints, and other organs in the body. The cause of this painful disease is unknown, though there are several theories. These include:
  • The immune system not working properly.
  • Genetic makeup passed down from parents.
  • An unexplained immune system response to a virus, bacteria, or mycoplasma (microscopic organisms without rigid cell walls).
  • The body’s response to environmental factors.
Some of the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis include joint pain, heat, and swelling, particularly in the morning and after long periods of inactivity. As the disease progresses, the cartilage, joints, ligaments and tendons begin to breakdown, causing further loss of joint function. Further advancement can affect one’s daily activities such as work, social functioning, and eventually even person independence. While rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory type of disease, osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease. Actual breakdown of the cartilage that covers the ends of bones occurs. Ostearthritis also causes bones to become brittle which, of course, increases the risk of the bones cracking or breaking. It can be a hereditary disease and affects three times as many women over the age of 60 as men. Some common causes of osteoarthritis are:
  • Bone injury.
  • A defect in the protein that makes up cartilage.
  • Wear and tear of aging.
Many of the nutrients found in velvet antler are important for arthritis sufferers. Glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, essential fatty acids, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, zinc, selenium, growth hormones, and growth factors are all vital for growth and maintenance of joints, tissues and synovial fluids. Compliance has been met with U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulations to allow a claim to be made about velvet antler products. The specific claim substantiated by scientific evidence, states that velvet antler "provides nutritional support for joint structure and function." Modern research studies continue as people suffering with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis claim relief from painful and swollen joints.

Inhibiting the Aging Process

A number of changes continually occur in the body as part of the aging process. The skin, ligaments, and tendons begin to loose elasticity. Even larger arteries lose elasticity, causing increased blood pressure, decreased heart rate, and decreased blood flow through the heart. The body may also become less able to adapt to environmental changes such as cold weather. The immune system weakens with age, leaving the body less able to heal and repair itself. Some people experience memory loss and decreased ability to solve problems. As one grows older, a decrease in the body’s ability to digest food properly often leads to nutritional deficiencies and diseases related to these deficiencies. Available research suggests that components, such as growth hormones and growth factors (and possibly some yet to be discovered components) available in velvet antler, may be key in slowing the aging process. One of the growth hormones in velvet antler is IGF 1 (insulin like growth factor). A study conducted at Oxford University in England lead researchers to believe that the IGF 1 contained in velvet antler has medicinal value for humans. IGF 1 was shown to promote muscular development, prevent muscular atrophy (breakdown), and slow the deteriorating effects of aging.11 Further research on the anti aging effects of velvet antler needs to be done. 4. Sunwoo, H. (1998). Chemical characterization of growing antlers While rheumatoid arthritis is an inflammatory type of disease, from wapiti. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB. 5. Personal communication from E. Lung, Hong Kong,alumni University of Alberta. Information based on translated material from Chinese Herbal Dictionary. 6. Archer, R.H., & Palfreyman, P.J. (1983). Properties of New Zealand Deer Velvet Part 1: Search of Literature. Palmerston North, N.Z.:Massey University. 7. Balch,l., & Balch, E (1997). Prescription for nutritional healing (2nd Ed.). Garden City Park, New York. Avery Publishing Group 8. Research links velvet antler to multi billion dollar dietary supplement. (1998, Fall). North American Elk9(4), 121. 9. Fisher, B., Gilpin, M., & WIles, D. (1999, Winter). Elk velvet antler research results. Canadian Elk and Deer Farmer,6(1)35. 10. Church,]. (1999, Winter) Testosterone and velvet antler. Canadian Elk and Deer Farmer 6(1)41 42 11. McNeary, ES. (1999). Velvet Antler Substantiates New Hope for arthritis sufferers. 12. Kamen, B., & Kamen, E (1999). The remarkable healing power of velvet antler. Novato,CA
Research Studies

Writing in the North American Elk magazine

Writing in the North American Elk magazine, Frederick Obey has summarized the results of modern research on velvet antler. This research has been conducted in eight general areas:

Hormonal Effects

Velvet antler has been shown to boost testosterone levels. (This hormone promotes male characteristics.) It has also been shown to boost estrogen levels. (This hormone promotes female characteristics.) The estrogen hormone most affected by velvet antler is estradiol. Estradiol is a precursor to testosterone.

Blood Building Effects

Tests with preparations of velvet antler have shown it to increase production of both red blood cells (to a higher degree) and white blood cells (to a lesser degree). These facts are linked with velvet antler’s ability to increase oxygen uptake to the brain, liver and kidneys.

Protection Against Stress

Velvet antler helps the body to maintain homeostasis against heat, cold and electric shock. This has been linked to velvet antler’s ability to decrease mast cell degranulation.

Protection from Liver Damage

In a controlled test, velvet antler helped to protect lab animals from liver damage by carbon tetrachloride.

Stimulation of Growth

Velvet antler is an extremely rich, fast growing tissue that contains many growth factors. Elk can grow up to 50 pounds of new bone in approximately two months. Due to its fast rate of growth, velvet is being looked at as a model for studies on osteoporosis, arteriosclerosis, as a possible graft for healing fractures.

Aging Retardation

Recent studies in Japan show that velvet reduced signs normally associated with senility. This is probably due to its hormonal effects.

Recovery from Traumatic Injury

Antler, as an extremely fast growing tissue, is comprised of many cell types. These include: fibroblasts, chondroblasts, chondrocytes and others. All of these are required for healthy growing bones and tissue. Velvet antler is high in calcium and phosphates which aid in the healing of bones. Research has shown that velvet antler helps to heal neural (nerve) tissue. This mechanism can be explained by velvet antler’s ability to enhance glycosis to nerve tissue. Velvet antler’s relationship to recovery from traumatic injury could possibly explain its effectiveness against arthritis.

Reduction of Blood Pressure

Blood pressure reduction is due to velvet antler’s ability to increase dilation of the peripheral blood vessels. Velvet antler is also widely known as an aphrodisiac. Its reputation as an aphrodisiac originated through ancient medicine and folklore from the East. According to modern research, velvet antler has shown gonadotropic activity. This means that it can stimulate growth and increase the weight of both the seminal vesicles and prostate. Velvet antler can boost hormonal activity, increase oxygen uptake to the brain, liver and kidneys, decrease the rate of muscle fatigue, and promote muscular growth. It is extremely useful for both physical and mental activity as well as promoting healing.
Research Studies

Can I give this product to my dog, cat and horse?

The following article appears in Velvet Antler - A Gift From Nature, - by Cindy Ewashkiw & Marion Allen Ph.D., R.N. In today's society, pets have become an integral part of the family structure. Because of the importance of pets, owners have become very conscientious about the health and quality of life of those pets. With the average person far outliving their pets, the want for health and longevity of the family pet is certainly understandable. In North America, millions of pets suffer from chronic arthritis and other aging diseases. The vast array of conventional drugs used to treat these conditions often has serious and even fatal side effects. Because of these side effects, animal health care providers are continually seeking quality alternative treatments. In Gallup, New Mexico, velvet antler, which has no known side effects, has had remarkable results on almost 80% of the 200 animals with clinical arthritis. In addition to regenerative effects on joint cartilage and joint fluid, velvet antler also has a positive effect on the immune system. This boost often creates a feeling of well being, which affects the appetite and attitude of animals under treatment. Why does velvet antler work better than some single nutrient natural products on the market? The combination of nutrients available in velvet antler provides a synergistic effect. The result of combining efforts of many nutrients shows a much greater gain than the effort of a single nutrient. Some more positive effects of velvet antler in animals are:
  • Improved hair coat
  • Improved kidney function
  • Increased reproductive performance
  • Accelerated wound healing
All are important issues for pets from young to old. Average daily cost for an owner to supplement his/her pet with velvet antler is generally cheaper than a cup of coffee. Work is currently underway to study effectiveness of velvet antler in young animals of breeds that have a high incidence of hip dysplasia. Hip dysplasia is an inherited disease of the hip and elbow joints. The joints begin deteriorating early in life, leading to severe pain and loss of function. Some breeds, such as the German Shepherd and Labrador, have a greater risk than smaller breeds. Velvet antler appears to slow the progression of the disease and increases the animal's quality of life. There is also some indication that velvet antler's use in puppies promotes bone and muscle growth. With athletic animals, velvet antler is useful in speeding up muscle recovery and preventing soreness after hard workouts. In horses, positive effects are being noted in musculo-skeletal conditions, hoof and hair growth, and wound healing. Velvet antler is not a panacea or cure-all, but it can definitely improve the quality of life for animals in a safe and affordable manner. It has a place in the diet and nutritional supplementation program of pets and is a natural and annual renewable resource that every pet and horse owner should consider.
Welcome To Our Site


VELVET ANTLER is an Ontario, Canada product made from PURE Canadian elk antlers produced by ELK RANCH du WAPITI.

Our product is Government regulated by the CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency). It is freeze dried and processed in a GMP approved plant and audited by the NPA (Natural Products Association).


Our Product

anltersElk or deer antler velvet has been used in TRADITIONAL CHINESE MEDICINE since the beginning of the first millennium. In the last few years western scientific studies have proven what our eastern neighbours have known all this time….ELK VELVET ANTLER has amazing health benefits.

Elk Velvet Antler is a natural supplement to achieve :

  • Arthritis relief
  • Increased energy
  • Anti-aging
  • Immune enhancement
  • Athletic performance
  • Increased blood flow
  • Mental acuity
  • Muscle building




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