Healthy Ingredients for Your Pet: Pomegranates

The next ingredient in our ongoing series on Healthy Ingredients for Your Pet are pomegranates. Pomegranates are classified as a super fruit and are super healthy to eat!

What is a pomegranate?
Pomegranates are in the Lythraceae family and are small fruit bearing shrub or tree that grows to 20-30 feet. Each pomegranate holds around 600 seeds which is the part that is eaten. Pomegranates are categorized as a berry and is typically eaten raw or the seeds made into juice.

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Why would pomegranates be in pet food?
Pomegranates are said to be one of the healthiest fruits available. They are packed with antioxidant, antiviral and anti-tumor properties and good amounts of Vitamin A, E & C. They are also a good source of folic acid, potassium, fiber and protein.

Pomegranates also contain two unusual substances, punicalagins and punicic acid. These unique substances are extremely powerful antioxidants. The pomegranates anti-inflammatory properties are thought to help with arthritis, joint pain and may help fight certain types of cancer. They contain no cholesterol or saturated fats and make a super healthy snack for humans.

Are there any risks to feeding your pet pomegranates?
There is some thought that the tannins found in these berries can cause a stomach upset in some pets. Since the science behind this isn’t conclusive, to be safe, it’s best not to feed them raw pomegranates directly. But your pets don’t have to miss out on the health benefits or flavor found in pomegranates as many pet treats or pet foods contain small amounts of pomegranate seeds or pomegranate juice.

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Pomegranate Factoids:

  • Pomegranate juice has been found to have three times the antioxidant activity and benefits of red wine and green tea.
  • Pomegranate seeds can be sweet or tart depending on their level of ripeness.
  • The word pomegranate means apple with many seeds.

A sampling of pet foods that contain pomegranates:
Nutram , T23 Grain Free Turkey, Chicken & Duck
Farmina, Chicken & Ancestral Grain Neutered
Nutrience, Adult Turkey, Chicken & Herring

Sources:

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/12-proven-benefits-of-pomegranates

http://canigivemydog.com/pomegranate

https://www.petmd.com/blogs/thedailyvet/pmahaney/2013/oct/which-fall-fruits-are-healthiest-for-pets-30994

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