Tag Archives: nutrition

Guest Contribution : The Ingredients that Are Good and Bad for Your Pet Dog

The Ingredients that Are Good and Bad for Your Pet Dog

Meet Jordan Walker, one of the regular contributors at the Coops And Cages blog. As one who shares the same interest in dogs, Jordan will talk about those good and bad ingredients that could be found in our pet dog’s plate.

Ingridients that are good and bad for your pet dog

Dogs are one of the best animal companions. They could be your partners during your morning walk at your neighborhood’s nearby park. They could be your silly roommate that keeps you away from being bored. Or they could just be your energy fix when you’re feeling down. Because your pet dog makes you happy, you feel the need to feed him more as a token of gratitude, as a sign that you also care for him.

The happy face that you see from your dog when he’s eating makes your heart filled with warmth. But as a responsible pet owner, you need to be more aware and more conscious as to what you feed your dog. You want your pet to be happy, too, right? In this article, you’ll be able to know the good and the bad ingredients to your waggling animal companion.

The good and bad meat ingredients

Meat is an essential part of a dog’s diet because it is a great source of protein. Protein consists of amino acids which are important for your dog’s growth and development. Meat could come from chicken, duck, turkey, pork, beef, lamb and salmon. The lean parts of these meat sources are considered good meat, but how about the so-called bad meat?

Bad meats are generally the by-products of slaughtered animals such as the head, neck, lungs, liver, kidneys, blood, bones, brain, spleen, etc. Though most people think that these by-products are also meat since they come from animal sources, they are not really classified as meat because they lack real meat content. Plus, these by-products might be consisting of diseased tissues and organs.

Depending on the breed, size and activity of your dog, his protein requirements differ from any other dog.

dog food 1

Whole grains and corn/soy/wheat products

Foods containing carbohydrates provide energy to your pets. Examples of carbohydrate-rich foods are whole grains such as corn, soy, wheat, rice, barley, oats, potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas, and many more. It is often debated that dogs don’t really have a nutritional need for carbohydrates but they could still burn carbohydrates to use as an extra source of energy and help improve their digestion.

You may include whole grains in their diet as long as you provide them with quality ingredients. But among the whole grain products that you should cross out in your list are corn, soy and wheat, as well as the milling leftovers. This is because these whole grain products are only considered as cheap fillers in any dog food.

Essential fatty acids and animal fats

Fats have gained a bad rap in animal nutrition, but not all fats are bad. Essential fatty acids such as omega-3 and omega-6 are among the good fats that your pet dog needs. You could derive these good fats from salmon oil, flaxseed oil, canola oil, chicken fat and pork fat. These essential fatty acids add flavor to your pet’s food and they also help your pet to maintain a healthy and shiny coat.

On the other hand, animal fats which are obtained from the “4-D” class (dead, dying, diseased, disabled) are obviously bad for your pet’s consumption. If bad fats are fed to your dog, your pet would be at risk of developing health problems such as obesity.

Natural and artificial preservatives

Preservatives are usually added to your dog’s kibble to prevent early spoilage of the food, as well as improve its taste. Though preservatives are generally attached to the notion of unhealthy and artificial, there are actually preservatives which are good for your dog such as the natural tocopherols (vitamin E) and ascorbic acid (vitamin C).

Ethoxyquin, propylene glycol, BHT and BHA are some of the artificial preservatives you have to watch out for when choosing dog foods. These artificial preservatives are often linked with the development of several health conditions such as cancer, kidney and liver damage, and intestinal blockage.

dog food 2

Now that you have known what’s good and bad for your pet dog, it is really essential for you to read the dog food’s label. If you want your pet to stay healthy, stay away from the abovementioned bad food ingredients. As to how much good food your pet dog should consume, always ask your vet first. Dogs have different built, activities and health conditions. Based on their current health status, your vet may prescribe your dog to eat as much as this or as little as that. But generally knowing these tips, you know what food ingredients need to be consumed or avoided. Dogs would feel your love for them if you treat them as you love yourself. Provide them shelter, give them nutritious food and play with them!

 

Image Sources: [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

Jordan WalkerAuthor: Jordan Walker

Jordan is the lead content curator for Coops And Cages as well as a couple of other pet related blogs. His passion for animals is only matched by his love for ‘attempting’ to play the guitar. If you would like to catch him, you can via Google+ or Twitter: @CoopsAndCages

 

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Give Your Pet the Ideal Balance with Hill’s

 

A couple of weeks back, I was privileged to join my lovely friend Heather from FemmeLifestyle to go to a different type of launch that involved skin care, hair care and the general well-being of our hairy four legged friends at the 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa. The launch was for Hill’s Pet Nutrition newest brand, Hill’s Ideal Balance.

1 Hill's Ideal Balance canine & feline logo (with sky)

The talk was led by nutritionist Dr Kathy Gross who had flew all the way from the USA for the exciting new brand to launch under the Hill’s name for the first time in about 45 years. Dr Gross explained the reasoning behind creating a pet-food which was all natural based on the expectations of a natural shopper and she really highlighted that we as humans have so much choice of what we eat and how we receive the right nutrients but our pets only get what we give them which is actually quite a huge responsibility on a pet owner. Getting the right nutrients is not the only challenge we face but getting the correct balance of nutrients is key and this is how the all-natural food, Ideal Balance was born.

HILLS IDEAL BALANCE CHART

“While I believe in natural ingredients, the more I learn, the more I wonder whether just being natural is enough to deliver the best quality nutrition. I know that ingredients are not enough and it’s the balance that’s important for a healthier pet.”

My puppy (or should I say old-lady-dog) Jess has been on Hill’s for as long as I can remember and she is 13 years old. She has never been a fan of dry food on its own, especially when she can have so many better choices available and so we have always had to mix some meat with her dry Hill’s Biscuits. I trust the Hill’s brand for my dog because the vet has always recommended it and she has lived an entirely healthy life and seems to be a happy dog. If my word is not enough, Hill’s was voted by the South African public as most trusted pet food in the Readers Digest Most Trusted Brands Survey of 2013.

The launch featured Bob & Bella, celebrity Hill’s French bulldogs that present on the Espresso Show. They happily modelled for hours with the new food and showed everyone that it got a big doggie thumbs up. Jess Treats - Ideal Balance

Prior to the launch, we were asked what animals we had and got given (THANK YOU and woof from Jess!) the new range to try out according to the animal (cat or dog) the size of the breed (small, medium or large). The selection chosen for my pooch was the Adult small breed 1.8kg dry food (RSP: R189) with Adult Poached Salmon and Vegetables Canned food (RSP: R20 per can) rounded off with some Turkey and Cranberries Treats (RSP: R49).

Jess has been in Johannesburg – can you say jetsetter? But she is now back with me in Cape Town and has only started to eat her new food this week. Despite my worry that she would lift her nose up at the biscuits, meat and treats because they differ from her norm she has quite frankly woofed every meal down and is still looking for more.

The range is available for cats too and will be available at selected vets countrywide from 1 April 2014 (this brand was launched initially overseas in 2013). If you think this range will be ideal for your fluffy friend, have a chat with your vet and they will give you the best advice.

Be sure to follow Hills on Twitter and Facebook and check out their website here for even more information.

x flea143

Disclaimer: the goodies given to me were a gift, this has however not altered my view of the products in anyway. No bribery nor corruption has been used in this post.

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Guest Contribution : Clover – Living a Beautifully Healthy Life

One look at the supermarket shelves reveals the huge growth in alternatives to anything and everything, including milk. The secret is to let your diet lead you to an oasis of calm and health. When you are stressed out chances are your diet takes a plunge for the worse, You may eat the whole shebang, or lose your appetite altogether. No matter how you deal with it, stress affects your body in more ways than one and by eating incorrectly you could be doing yourself harm. Choose wisely what you put in your mouth and you can help your body with the war on stress.

Place antioxidant-rich foods on your grocery list – these include tomatoes, apricots, almonds, hazelnuts, mangoes, peppers, pilchards, mussels, broccoli, carrots, paw-paw and spinach.

The benefits of milk:

Milk contains the amino acid tryptophan, which is converted into vitamin B3 by the liver. It then helps raise serotonin levels, a neurotransmitter that helps the body regulate appetite, sleep patterns and mood. Because of this ability, tryptophan has been used in the treatment of a variety of conditions, most notably insomnia, depression and anxiety.

Eating smart:

Oat-enriched smoothie

If you simply cannot face a big breakfast, it might be a great idea to bulk up on your smoothie with a handful of oats.

Ingredients:

One serving:

1 banana

1 teaspoon of honey

90 ml full cream milk

125 ml plain yoghurt

½ cup raspberries

1 ½ cup rolled oats

Method:

Add all the ingredients to a blender and process until smooth. Serve immediately.

A common reason for striking cows’ milk and dairy products off the menu is having a low level of the enzyme lactase needed to digest the milk sugar, lactose. Lactose intolerance is quite common affecting at least 33% of people worldwide. Moderating your milk consumption can prove to be beneficial.

Although some experts blame cows’ milk for the increased risk of health problems, others argue that its complex mixture of nutrients has health benefits:

  • Milk is rich in calcium which is required for strong bones and teeth, and for a healthy functioning heart. A 250 ml glass of 2% low-fat cows’ milk offers 24% of the adult nutrient reference value of calcium (1300 mg a day).
  • Milk contains good fats too – Milk from grass-fed cows contain “good “unsaturated fats. Replacing the “bad” fats with the “good” fats in a diet will reduce heart-disease risk. Milk also has conjugated linoleic acid, which assists in reducing cholesterol.
  • Vitamins and minerals – Milk is full of vitamins, minerals and other biologically active health-boosting compounds.
  • Probiotics – fermented milk products that have live cultures, such as yoghurt, contain probiotics – these are linked to a range of health benefits such as an increased immune function. Try adding low-fat yoghurt to your bowl of muesli in the mornings.
  • Weight control – Full cream milk passes through the gastric tract slowly, which can help to regulate blood sugar levels and appetite.

Remember that living a beautifully healthy life is what really matters at the end of the day.

If you wish to submit an authored our anonymous guest post please feel free to contact poutperfection@gmail.com or one of columnistas directly for more information

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Snack It!!!!!

Heya Poutlings!!

I trust the first month of 2013 is treating you well, if not…. well the future is in your hands so make it work for you!

As for the common persons new years resolutions, if you had any I hope you’ve stuck to them and if being more healthy and fit was one of them, I have a few healthy snacks to help you get through the day.

Eating healthy shouldnt need to be a chore, these snacks can be made in just 5min.

RICE CAKE STACK

rice cake stack

– Spread a tablespoon of natural peanut butter on a rice cake, then add some sliced or mashed banana on top of that before adding the second rice cake on top.

– This is ideal as it is a high-energy snack that is packed full of potassium, fibre and healthy fats. Peanuts are also full of essential nutrients, such as protein, vitamin E, folic acid, niacin, B6, folate and thiamin.

– The fibre in bananas not only keeps digestion regular, but also helps maintain low blood sugar and curbs overeating.

NUKED SWEET POTATO

sweet potato

– Prick the skin of a medium-sized sweet potato (300 grm) with a fork in a few places. Place it on a plate and microwave at full power for about five minutes. Once cooked through cut the sweet potato open and sprinkle it with cinnamon and a sprinkle of brown sugar, honey or a sweetener.

– Sweet potato contain beta-carotene, a phytochemical used to make vitamin A, as well as loads of vitamin C to boost your immune system.

– Sweet potatoes are high in Vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 helps reduce the chemical homocysteine in our bodies. Homocysteine has been linked with degenerative diseases, including the prevention of heart attacks.

CARROT, CREAM CHEESE & RAISIN BITES

carrot, cream cheese & raisin bites

– Spread some fat-free cream cheese onto a whole-wheat tortilla. Add some grated carrot and raisins before rolling it up and slicing into 10 ubite-size pieces.

– The sweetness of the carrots and raisins make it taste like a treat, without the guilt. Carrots are also rich in betacarotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the liver, while raisins are a good source of fibre, calcium and healthy sugar energy.

– The potassium and magnesium contents of raisins help reduce acidity (an abnormal metabolic condition known as acidosis) and remove toxins from the body, which may cause diseases such as arthritis, gout, kidney stones and heart disease.

BILTONG WRAP

biltong wrap

– Fill half of a whole-wheat tortilla with lean slices of biltong, sliced tomato, lettuce and a small wedge of avacodo. As all the ingredients are served cold so you can prepare and eat this snack in under 5 minutes.

– The meal provides the ideal mix of fibre, protein, and heart-healthy fat.

– Biltong is a high protein and low-fat snack. Because biltong has been dried and cured, it is light to carry yet contains a power pack of valuable nutrition, making it ideal to take everywhere.

So Poutlings, instead of that dreadful chocolate, or a packet of chips, try these delicious snacks.
Keep it healthy.
XoXo Megs

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FITNESS MAGAZINE

FITNESS MAGAZINE!

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Being a fitness fanatic, I am completely in love with FITNESS MAGAZINE !

Never have I come across a magazine so informative and interesting, I have been buying and reading this magazine religiously for over 2 years now, never once have I been disappointed in it.

Being from South Africa, a lot of our fitness magazines were imported from overseas, which I didn’t bother buying due to the fact that if there were recipes or anything in them, I wouldn’t find half the ingredients or clothing and supplements they had for sale or advertised in the magazine.

Having fallen in love with FITNESS MAGAZINE SOUTH AFRICA I would highly recommended this magazine to any fitness fanatic, or those starting off new in the gym or fitness and health lifestyle.

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Fitness magazine is very comprehensive, they have articles for beginners and advanced fitness freaks (like me), they have articles for the pregnant fairy’s, articles on health and training, success stories, and fat loss articles.

Ladies take advantage! Best magazine to buy, so educational and articles are always a pleasure to read. Awesome fitness clothes advertised along with nutritional supplements from leading brands.

Fitness magazine is available in your leading stores, like CNA and Dis-Chem or even better get a subscription and have it delivered to you, even better get a Digital Copy.

Fitness Magazine is well priced and well worth it! SO what you waiting for ladies, go grab one and get fit!

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XoXo

Megs

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