Organic oats, blitzed
For a cereal/grain, oats are quite high in protein and fat. Their make up is approximately 66% carbohydrates, 17% protein, 7% fat and 11% fibre. They are also high in antioxidants and a range of vitamins and minerals. The carbohydrate content in oats is mostly starch, which is generally not a recommended food for dogs, however, the starch in oats is roughly half slowly digestible starch and resistant starch. Slowly digestible starch assists with regulating blood sugar and assist food to move through the digestive system at optimum speed. Resistant starch passes through the digestive tract undigested and is vital to the maintenance of a healthy gut. Resistant starch is a prebiotic food, which means it feeds the probiotics or “good bacteria” in the gut microbiome and assist to maintain the balance of good to bad gut bacteria, which in turn supports all aspects of our pet’s health. This means that oats can be considered a digestive aid to calm the intestinal tract, and a gut health aid when fed in conjunction with probiotics or probiotic foods.
Oats bridge the gap between food and herb and are known as a “nervine”, which is a herbal compound affecting the nerves. This means oats are commonly used in herbalism to treat nervous disorders and can be considered a useful wholefood tool when dealing with issues like anxiety in dogs.
Oats are high in many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, particularly vitamin B1 (thiamine), B3 (niacin), folate, selenium, manganese, zinc, phosphorus, copper, iron, molybdenum and magnesium.
Organic produce is always preferable as it reduced the toxic load on the body and the environment. Blitzing the oats to a flour is an excellent way to make them more easily digested and increase the availability of the nutrients they contain.
As a binding agent and flavour enhancer, bananas are an excellent choice. They are dog safe and contain quite a few vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. They are particularly high in potassium, as well a vitamin B6, manganese, copper, magnesium and vitamin C. They are a good source of fibre, without being an allergen or causing upset tummies, like a lot of common sources of fibre may for dogs. The potassium in bananas is good for heart health, while the fibre aids digestion. They also contain a good dose of tryptophan, which is a precursor to the production of both serotonin (the happy hormone) and melatonin (the sleep hormone). This means they may also assist with the good management of stress and mood.
Organic hemp seeds
Hemp seeds are an incredibly nutritious addition to our pet’s diet, in part due to the fact that they are made up of over one third healthy fats and one third high quality protein. The fat they contain is largely made up of polyunsaturated fat and essential fatty acids, with very little saturated fat and no trans fat.
Essential fatty acids are an integral inclusion in any diet, as the body is unable to produce them. Hemp seeds contain both omega 3 and omega 6. These antioxidants are necessary for a healthy immune system and are known for improving skin health, brain function and reducing inflammation in the body. While omega 6 is often attributed to an increase in inflammation, this is not an inherent quality of omega 6 consumption, but rather an issue to do with consuming too much omega 6 and not enough omega 3. Hemp seeds, however, contain an ideal ratio of the two fatty acids. They also contain a good dose of gamma-linolenic acid, which is rare in food and is thought to fight cancer, assist with joint pain and improve the condition of the skin and coat.
The high protein content of hemp seeds is even more impressive when we consider that they contain all ten of the essential amino acids for dogs, including arginine, which has fantastic benefits for heart health. On top of healthy fats and protein, hemp seeds contain good doses of vitamin E, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous, iron, zinc, B vitamins, magnesium, calcium and vitamin A.