Obesity, Gastrointestinal disorders, Yeast infections, Skin irritation, Fatigue, Arthritis, Heart disease, Behavioral issues, Cancer. These are just few of the common health conditions plaguing our dogs, they all result from inflammation that originates in their body cells caused pretty much by our dog’s diet and lifestyle.
But can food really make a difference in your dog’s health? YES IT CAN.
Functional real foods include certain botanicals, amino acids, vitamins and phytonutrients (chemicals that occur naturally in plants) that can activate disease fighting genes and suppress genes that promote diseases.
Now you might say “my dog eats complete and balanced or vet prescription commercial food, isn’t that enough?!” Short answer is NO! You also need to think of all added chemicals, hormones, antibiotics, by-products, fillers, meat origin, etc… And this is something we’ll discuss in future posts.
Today I’m going to discuss what functional foods you can to add to the bowl to enhance your dog’s diet.
The Correct Type of Carbohydrates
Which are packed with health promoting vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients:
Veggies: broccoli and broccoli sprouts, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, bok choy, cauliflower, sweet potato, pumpkin, carrots.
Leafy greens: kale, spinach, collard greens.
Legumes: kidney beans, chickpeas, lentils, black eyed peas, butter beans, peas.
Grains: quinoa, gluten free oats, millet, barley.
Fruits: blueberries, cranberries, apple, banana, watermelon, pomegranate, coconut.
High Quality Protein With Essential Amino Acids
That come from naturally raised, grass fed, hormones and antibiotics free animal sources *which are difficult to source in some parts of the world!
Muscle and Organ meats from novel animal sources such as buffalo, goat, duck, rabbit, turkey, venison, pork. These sources are less likely to cause food sensitivities than common fed proteins (Chicken, beef, lamb).
Fish that are low in mercury: sardines, anchovies, alaskan salmon, butterfish, smelt, mackerel, green lipped mussel, and some shellfish like shrimp and oyster. Avoid shellfish if your dog is allergic to it. Avoid farmed fish at any cost.
Eggs: duck, quail, chicken.
Dairy (milk, cheese, milk kefir, yogurt) made from novel animal sources: goat, sheep.
Dietary Fats And Oils
Supplies dogs with the most concentrated and digestible form of energy and provides important essential fatty acids such as omega-3 fatty acids:
Fats from meat sources mentioned above.
Fats from fish sources mentioned above.
Oils: hemp seed, olive, sunflower, pumpkin seed, walnut, coconut oils. Choose oils that are expeller pressed and organic oils and avoid hydrogenated oils!
How To Feed!
Instead of just adding these foods to the bowl, replace 1/3 portion of kibble with 1/3 of fresh foods at 70% veggies and fruits to 30% proteins ratios.
Some of these functional foods can be fed raw while others must be steamed and lightly cooked which we’ll discuss in future posts.
By following this tips and considering what goes into your dog’s daily meals, you can turn the boring kibble bowl into a healthy super meal that your dog looks forward to.