Your Pet’s Superheroes: Vegetables & Legumes 10/26/11
Vegetables & Legumes: Superhero food for your pets. Paul Jacobson shares top natural food tips.
Vegetarians and vegans generally appreciate the wellness benefits that are derived from a greener and holistic life style. Vegans, in particular, aspire to a moral and ethical life style. However, almost all people acknowledge the positive impact that a natural, wholesome and organic diet can have on health and the great value that vegetables offer in terms of mineral and vitamin wealth.
A wholesome diet – including vegetables, fruits and legumes – is essential in producing natural antioxidants which protect us from sickness and control free radicals, which are the cause of many dread diseases and general poor health.
As mentioned before, when it comes to our pets, the abstract discussion as to whether our dogs evolved from a wolf or dingo is of no real consequence at all. Dogs have evolved over thousands of years to eat a balanced home-prepared diet, very similar to what we eat. Historically our pets have been fed table scraps and stolen titbits and their metabolism has adapted to accommodate the variation. Our dogs can no longer digest copious amounts of raw meat and prefer a diet that is rich in vegetables and nutritious pulses.
Here are some vegetables and legumes that are great value for money, effective and nutritional for both human and animal:
Lentils are a “superfood”. They are a good protein source, high in fibre and a fantastic source of iron.
- Brown Rice
Brown rice is a great source of healthy carbohydrates and energy. The Chinese believe that it has the perfect balance between Yin and Yang.
Millet is high in protein and is rich in B vitamins, especially niacin, B17, B 6 and folic acid, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium and zinc. Millet contain NO gluten.
Peas are also high in energy and rich in Vitamin B1, B3, B6 and B9. They are also very rich in Vitamin C and Phosphorus.
- Pearl Barley
Barley contains all eight essential amino acids. Considered a whole grain, de-hulled barley still has its bran and germ, making it a healthy and nutritious food.
- Wheat Germ
Wheat germ is a concentrated source of several essential nutrients including Vitamin E, folic acid, phosphorous, zinc and magnesium. It also contains essential fatty acids.
Beetroots are rich in the nutrient betaine, which is important for cardiovascular health. Betaine also protects against liver disease, particularly the build up of fatty deposits in the liver.
- Sweet Potato
Sweet potatoes are rich in complex carbohydrates, dietary fibre, beta carotene, Vitamin C and Vitamin B6. In 1992, The Center for Health in the Public Interest rated the sweet potato as the highest vegetable in nutritional value.
Carrots have a wealth of minerals and are a must for any pet food. They build strong teeth, bones, cartilage and nails. They provide energy, vitality and strength, promote healing of wounds and aid with digestion.
So whether you are cooking for the family, two-legged or four, make sure that you include vegetable and legumes in their diet.
Paul Jacobson is a Pet Food Nutritionist and qualified chef and owner of Vondis Holistic Pet Nutrition. Vondis has been producing natural pet food for 14 years and is a registered nutritional pet food. Vondis is actively involved in educating the public on the benefits of natural diets for pets and a holistic approach when treating them. Go to www.vondis.co.za for more information.