Cats are generally low maintenance pets, but like any other organism, they need to intake the appropriate nutrition for their bodies. What you feed your cats will depend on factors like their weight, breed, dietary requirements, and age. A cat’s diet should mainly consist of meats since they are naturally carnivores. Their food should look like what they would eat if they are in the wild. Once in a while, though, it is helpful to add some fruits or vegetables. They make up for some nutrients which the meats may not contain and help make the meal more balanced. However, not all plant foods are functional for cats to consume. Have you ever asked yourself ‘Can cats eat blueberries?’ Maybe you were snacking on some blueberries and you felt tempted to share some with your cat. In this article, you will get information on whether or not your cat can indulge with you in a bowl of fresh blueberries and what implications come with its consumption.
What Are Blueberries?
Fruits and vegetables are usually associated with health because of some properties they possess but may vary in how beneficial they are to health. Blueberries are one of the repeatedly occurring fruits that are on the healthy side of the spectrum. Blueberries are blue or purple berries of perennial flowering plants that contain nutrients that are generally healthy. They contain anthocyanin, a plant component that is responsible for the color in the blueberries. They are known to increase heart and skin health, diabetes, blood pressure, and mental health. A cup of blueberries provides the required daily dose of vitamin C, as well. They also contain Vitamin K, which helps with blood clotting. One useful thing about blueberries is that it is versatile and can be added to other meals as a compliment. Anthocyanin in blueberries are not only responsible for the color but also some of the health benefits. Anthocyanin is a flavonoid that is responsible for the antioxidation component of plants. The berries can be used fresh or frozen. It is not clear whether frozen blueberries have lower quality than fresh ones but the latter is recommended more. There is still a gap to fill with regards to the health benefits, but so far blueberries do more harm than good to the consumer.
Cats’ Diet And Blueberries
Cats, as already established, are carnivores and so will not immediately prefer plant food, but having blueberries are not bad for them. They can digest the carbohydrate in the blueberries but less efficient as compared to digesting proteins. Also, your cat will not eat blueberries because they are sweet but because they are new to it. Cats love to try new things and so the cat might get excited to try it. The juiciness of the berry will also attract the cat to it more. The antioxidant component of the berry is beneficial to cats as well, and some cat food has blueberries in them, especially in powder form. The fiber and moisture content is also good for the cat’s digestion. You can give your cat blueberries as a snack or treat since they are already getting the nutrients they need from their protein-rich food. You should not feed your cat more than 10% of blueberries daily, and 2 to 3 will do just fine. Note that it is essential to know what your cat reacts to before feeding them new foods. Pay attention to what food makes your cat healthy and happy and feed it accordingly.
Health Benefits Of Blueberries
Some of the general advantages of consuming blueberries have been mentioned earlier, but it’s best to know precisely what value they add to the body. Blueberries affect health in the following ways:
- Diabetes: Studies show that fiber is the main contributor to improving Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. It helps with lowering blood glucose levels for Type 1 and improving insulin and lipid levels for Type 2. A cup of blueberries was shown to contribute 3.6 grams of fiber, which is a healthy amount. Studies showed that people who consumed three servings a week had a reduced risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
- Healthy bones: The nutrients which form part of the bones are iron, Vitamin K, calcium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc. Blueberries contain every one of these nutrients needed for proper bone growth and formation. Zinc and Calcium are responsible for the elasticity and strength of the bones, while vitamin K helps with calcium absorption.
- Improved mental health: When it comes to mental health people do not usually gravitate towards food to help. Studies have shown, however, that blueberries help with cognitive function and memory. The fruit improves short term memory and slows cognitive decline in older women.
- Digestion and weight loss: Due to the high fiber content, blueberries help prevent constipation and ease up the digestive tract. Thee fiber also helps in weight loss by giving the feeling of fullness to the consumer, thereby reducing appetite. This feeling reduces calorie intake, which in turn helps in weight loss.
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Tips For Feeding Blueberries To Your Cat
- Always keep it clean to keep your cat from getting sick. Wash it to take off dirt and pesticides
- Mash it into a paste for easy consumption
- Place it on top of its dry or wet food
- Cut it open to expose the juiciness
- Freeze it to give your cat a new temperature sensation and make the fruit more attractive
- Give a few whole blueberries as treats
It is clear that blueberries are healthy snacks even for cats and it will not hurt to incorporate a few into your cat’s diet. Even though cats are mainly carnivores, blueberries have additional benefits that spice up the animal’s diet. It also gives your furry companion an exciting eating experience, and they will love you for it. Every pet needs to be adequately fed, and one way to do that is to make sure they are eating the right things. When your cat is fed and healthy. You will get more engagement and love from the animal if you put time and effort into making sure it is happy.
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- Everything You Need To Know About Blueberries – Medical News Today
- Healthy Snack Ideas for Dogs and Cats – PetMD
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