If you are looking for foods that deliver maximum nutrient benefits with minimum calories then look no further. We have compiled a list of 9 nutrient dense foods to power both you and your dog through the day. Low calorie nutrient dense foods are often referred to as "SUPER FOODS". The name sounds good and when you fill your plate with these foods you will feel good as well. Super foods are excellent at assisting people and their pets fight disease, boost energy and maintain good health in general. Check with your vet first if your PUP has any dietary restrictions and try introducing some of these foods gradually.
Carrots are absolutely jam-packed with Vitamin A, which provides a plethora of nutritional benefits for your canine companion. In addition to being great for eye health, it’s also a vital component of a dog's immune system and supports healthier skin and fur.
In addition to being packed with vitamins, carrots are also a great source of stomach-healthy fibre. In order to make sure your dog remains ‘regular’, it is vital to provide them with food that is nutritious and high in fibre. Carrots will help your dogs digestive system and your PUP will love them for their natural sweetness and crunchy texture.
This festive gourd is a miracle food for dogs. Good for both diarrhea and constipation, canned pumpkin (not raw, not the sugary, spicy pie filling) is loaded with fiber and beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. Don’t give Buddy a lot of it—too much A is highly toxic to dogs—but a couple of teaspoons a day for little pups, or a couple of tablespoons for big boys, should keep them right on track.
Sweet potato is safe for dogs, and can provide them a range of health benefits (and a sweet flavor they’ll love). Sweet potatoes are great for digestive health because they’re high in dietary fiber. They’re also low in fat and contain vitamin B6, vitamin C, and manganese.
Sweet potatoes are rich in the powerful antioxidant beta-carotene. Beta-carotene converts to Vitamin A in your dog’s body, which is essential for your dog’s vision, growth, and muscle strength. Symptoms of Vitamin A deficiency include night blindness and poor hair and skin quality.
Dogs love the smell of fish, and in this case, there is a reason. Fish is a healthy source of protein and is often included in commercial dog food as an alternative protein source. Fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which according to veterinarians may have health benefits such as decreasing inflammation. Fish is also a good alternative for dogs with food allergies to more common ingredients, like chicken.
Fish itself is not harmful to dogs, but the way we prepare it can cause problems. Fish cooked in too much oil can cause GI upset in dogs, or even lead to serious illness such as pancreatitis. Seasonings may also cause serious health problems for dogs, especially if they contain toxic ingredients, like garlic. The biggest risk of feeding fish to dogs, however, is bones.
Dried edible seaweed is a Japanese staple. Often associated with sushi, nori is available in some supermarkets, especially those stocking Asian food items. It has protein, galactans (a soluble fiber), vitamins C, E and all the Bs, and minerals such as zinc and copper. It also contains some lesser-known sterols and chlorophyll, which have been investigated for their effects on regulating metabolism. Nori may have beneficial effects on fat metabolism, immune function and anti-tumor response. Make sure the nori/seaweed is low in sodium, amounts vary greatly in these products.
s a great source of fibre, chia may be a good supplement to add for dogs on a weight-loss regimen, but watch those calories: since chia is rich in fatty acids, a small amount is often enough. Chia seeds are much higher in omega-3 fatty acids than omega-6 and may not be a balanced fatty acid supplement. Make sure your dog’s overall diet has another source of omega-6 fatty acids before adding chia seeds. The fatty acids in chia will contribute to a healthy coat and may be a good alternative source for dogs that are sensitive to fish and fish oil. Chia seeds are also a source of minerals such as manganese, copper, and zinc.
Quinoa is packed with nutrients and healing properties. Due to it's high protein content (over 8 grams per cooked cup) and the fact that it contains the nine essential amino acids, it is often a staple of vegan and vegetarian diets. It is low in fat (about 3.5 grams per cooked cup), low in calories (about 220 per cooked cup) and cholesterol-free. It is a good source of iron, magnesium, vitamin B12, and fiber and is rich in antioxidants.
Quinoa is actually an ingredient in some high-quality dry dog foods. The strong nutritional profile of quinoa makes it a healthy alternative to corn, wheat, and soy — starches that are often used to make kibble.
Plain, low or non-fat yogurt provides probiotic benefits and serves as an excellent source of calcium for our canine companions. Adding a small spoonful of yogurt to your dog’s regular kibble at mealtime can provide digestive benefits and even help your dog stay full longer.
If you decide to feed yogurt to your dog, make sure to read ingredient labels carefully. Avoid flavored yogurts that are packed with sugar, and never feed yogurt that contains the ingredient xylitol, an artificial sweetener that is toxic for dogs. It’s also important to avoid yogurt that is chocolate flavored, since chocolate is also poisonous to dogs.
You already know that blueberries are good for us. They’re one of those “superfoods” we’re constantly told we should have more of in our diets. Unsurprisingly, they’re also good for your dog. All the antioxidants, fiber and phytochemicals blueberries boast provide the same benefits for your dog’s body that they give yours. Try frozen blueberries make for a crunchy treat dogs love.