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A Superfood For You And Your Pet

Updated: Mar 9, 2022

By now, you’ve probably heard all about psyllium, sports enthusiasts love to add it into their smoothies and post workout diet to help with their digestion.

You may or may not know though that it can be very beneficial for both dogs and cats as well.

Psyllium is a natural fiber supplement and a prebiotic that has been shown to be beneficial for numerous health conditions in people, pets, and horses.

It’s known to absorb toxins and to relieve constipation, gas, and diarrhea in both pets and people. Depending on the amount fed, it can either be a constipation reliever or help with settling diarrhea problems.

This amazing prebiotic fiber feeds and nourishes your pet’s gut bacteria. Most of the fiber from fruits and vegetables inside your pet’s diet don’t make it to the small, yet very important gut bacteria, that’s where feeding prebiotic fiber such as psyllium aids to the rescue.

When mixed together with water, psyllium swells and sticks together allowing for easy elimination of waste products and toxins inside your pet’s body. When first using psyllium it can lead to the development of more feces, which after a while settles, usually once all the waste inside the larger intestine has been successfully removed from your pet’s digestive system.

Because psyllium is so effective in treating diarrhea in pets, it has become a popular go-to natural remedy and supplement in Europe and the US.

In addition psyllium offers a large amount of natural antioxidants and essential sulphur-rich amino acids.

Psyllium, The Science Behind It

A 2016 study from Frontiers in Plant Science revealed that psyllium contains nutritional antioxidants, flavonoids, PUFAs (omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids), sulfur-rich and essential amino acids, and metabolites with bioactivities, which make it a promising candidate for use in the nutraceutical industry.

Other studies showed that psyllium husk prevented constipation, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, as well as reducing glucose and lowering cholesterol levels.

Psyllium aids weight control, helping to regulate glucose control for diabetic patients and reducing serum lipid levels in hyperlipidemics (via NCBI).

Where Does It Come from?

Psyllium comes from the Plantago plant originating in India. This herb can have as many as 15,000 gel-coated seeds. It comes in the form of psyllium husks, with each seed encased in a husk. The seed’s coating contains a rich substance called hemicellulose mucilage. This helps to absorb water as it expands in the intestine, dragging out whatever has to come out.

What Does It Do?

  • temporarily increases stool size

  • relives constipation usually after max of 72 hours

  • treats diarrhea (depending on the amount fed)

  • may lower blood sugar levels (hence perfect for people and pets with diabetes or preventing diabetes)

  • improves gut health in pets and people (feeds the active gut bacteria)

  • aids weight loss

  • may lower cholesterol

We use psyllium husk in all of our fresh meals, as prebiotic fiber and to aid digestion as well as help with proper weight control.

Precautions (for home use as supplement)

If you try to add psyllium to a home cooked diet there are things you need to consider or even consult a nutritionist on.

Psyllium may result in the lack of effectiveness if other medications are being used.

It also should not be used on dogs or cats that have intestinal perforations or obstructions.

Psyllium may cause gassiness and blockage if not consumed with plenty of water, we don’t recommend using it with dry food. Please make sure your pet drinks plenty or has plenty of liquid in their diet.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

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