Dietary fibers prove to be very helpful in managing chronic diseases in humans. They can lower down cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease. Moreover, it also can slow intestinal sugar absorption and helps to control diabetes. Fibers promote colon health and reduce the symptoms in colon and intestinal disorders.
Fibers are used to help with symptoms of diabetes and several intestinal diseases in dogs. But it’s important to know how much fiber do dogs need? Can dogs feed too much fiber? You need to know the precise amount of fibers in your dog’s daily diet. You should keep in mind that too much fiber can interfere with normal digestion and absorption of dietary nutrients.
Types of Dietary Fibers
Normally, there are two kinds of fibers; soluble and insoluble fibers. Fiber is present in many plant sources of food. Soluble fibers attract water and slow the movement of intestinal contents. It also slows the process of the digestion and absorption of some nutrients like starch, sugar, and cholesterol.
That’s the reason it aids in the management of human diabetes and heart disease. Insoluble or indigestible fibers increase stool volume and speed material through the intestines.
Most plant-based foods comprise of both soluble and insoluble fibers. Different foods contain different amounts of each type of fiber. Peas, oats, beans, barley, and the meat of apples and fruits contain more significant amounts of insoluble fibers.
The fruit’s skin and vegetables whole-wheat, wheat bran, nuts, beans, green beans, cauliflower, and potatoes contain larger amounts of insoluble fibers.
Soluble and insoluble fibers promote intestinal and colon health. Here are some sources of fiber; beet pulp, cabbage, rice bran, and guar gum are prebiotics. It contains sugar that promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria that maintain the health of the cells lining the colon.
Too Much Fiber in the Diet
Studies show that a large amount of fiber in diet can interfere with the intestinal absorption of magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc. It can decrease the cholesterol absorption, a fatty acid; it also speculated that high fibers diet might interfere with the absorption of other fats.
The current researches are minimal; studies in the 1990s reported the reduced activity of pancreatic enzymes with high fiber diets. The pancreatic enzyme is necessary for intestinal protein, fat and carbohydrate digestion and absorption. Reduced function of these enzymes would impair normal intestinal function.
The constant increase in dietary fiber increase stool volume and frequency and indicate that a diet may be too high in fiber.
Effects on Bowel Movement
Feeding your dog too much fiber results in excessive defecation. Most dogs have one to two bowel movements in a day; your dog may have considerably more than that rely on how much excess fibers he eats. Too much fiber intake without water may result in constipation and other problems.
Dietary Fiber Requirements for Dogs
Although there is no standard dose for fibers in the diet, most vet nutritionists recommend 2-5% of the dry matter of the diet. High level of fiber is necessary to control some medical conditions; maximum level of dietary fiber should be less than 10 % with 7 % a desirable maximum.
Most commercial food contains the proper amount of dietary fibers. However, a grain-free diet often exceeds 10% fiber due to their reliance on beans and other legumes and fiber-rich carbohydrates.