We all know how nutritious Brussel sprouts are for the human body. This vegetable belongs to the same family as cabbage and is similar to cauliflower and kale. They are consumed as a healthy side dish and comes packed with loads of essential nutrients and minerals.
Brussel sprouts are rich in vitamin C, vitamin K, protein, and fiber. Though they are not one of the favorite vegetables on our plate, their benefits outweigh everything else. But, can you share this vegetable with your guinea pig?
Can guinea pigs eat Brussel sprouts?
Yes! guinea pigs can safely eat Brussel sprouts. In fact, this vegetable is as nutritious for guinea pigs as it is for humans. Since Brussels sprouts belong to the same family as cabbage, they are naturally found in the environment where guinea pigs live. It is better if guinea pigs are fed with fruits and vegetables that are found in their natural habitat.
The best time to eat Brussel sprouts is between September to February during its growing season.
To keep your cavy healthy, you should give at least two to three servings of vegetables in a day. Eating the same vegetable always can make them bored. Hence, add Brussel sprouts to their diet and keep their taste buds refreshed from time to time.
A reminder here is to only feed fresh Brussel sprouts. Make sure that the stalks of the vegetables are fresh and green; otherwise, the vegetable loses its nutritional value. The number of Brussel sprouts should also be moderate, and don’t overfeed your guinea pig.
While Brussel sprouts are cooked when humans eat, they should always be given raw to guinea pigs.
Health benefits of eating Brussel sprouts for guinea pigs
If you are keen enough to feed Brussel sprouts to your guinea pigs, then you should know that this vegetable is rich in health benefits for your pet. Some of the many health benefits of eating this vegetable are:
Helps in healthy digestion
This vegetable is rich in dietary fiber and works great in keeping your guinea pig’s digestive system healthy.
Rich in Antioxidants
The rich antioxidants in these vegetables work to keep your guinea pig’s immune system strong and healthy. It boosts the body’s metabolism and helps in maintaining a stable and steady functioning of the organs in the body.
Helps in maintain sugar levels
High sugar levels in guinea pigs are detrimental to their health. You need to feed your pet with vegetables that will help in keeping the sugar levels stable in the body. For such reasons, Brussel sprouts are one of the best vegetables you can find. It helps in maintaining a healthy sugar level in the body and neutralizes any excess sugar.
Help in Growth
The presence of vitamin K in Brussel sprouts is highly beneficial for the growth of your guinea pigs. This vitamin helps in the development of bones in guinea pigs.
Helps in Repair and Growth of Tissues
Lack of vitamin C in guinea pigs causes many problems such as the formation of bladder stones, or a long time to heal a wound or injury. Brussel sprouts are a great source of vitamin C and help in repairing wounded tissues and also the formation and growth of new tissues in the body.
Easy to include in the diet
Guinea pigs are fond of vegetables and fruits. Brussel sprouts can be naturally found in their environment since they belong to the same family as cabbage. Therefore, t is easy to incorporate this vegetable into your guinea pig’s diet because they will love it instantly. This will make their meals nutritious as well as tasty at the same time.
Nutritional values of Brussels Sprouts
The nutritional content of Brussel sprouts is quite high compared to other vegetables. Recent studies have shown the presence of vitamin B6 in these wild cabbages. The nutrients found in Brussel sprouts are:
- Dietary fiber
- Vitamin K
- Oxalate acid
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
This wild cabbage smoothly aids in the digestion process because it is rich in dietary fiber. The presence of vitamin C improves the guinea pigs’ immune system, while vitamin K helps in healthy bones.
Harmful effects of Brussel sprouts on guinea pigs
If you tend to overfeed your guinea pigs with Brussel sprouts, the chances are that your pet may suffer several health issues. It is always advised to keep the quantity moderate. Begin by giving a small amount and see how their body reacts to it. If all seems fine, gradually increase the portion.
However, there are some health risks associated with feeding excess Brussel sprouts to guinea pigs:
- Brussel sprouts contain oxalic acid, which can damage your pet’s digestive tract if ingested in large quantities.
- The presence of phosphorus in Brussel sprouts is not a healthy choice to be fed to your pet regularly.
- Excess eating of Brussel sprouts in a week can cause bloating and diarrhea in your guinea pig. Your pet may start feeling sick and low in energy. Gastric bloating is dangerous and can sometimes even lead to death.
- The stalks of Brussels are nutritious only when they are green and fresh. Old Brussel stalks can make your pet feel sick and uncomfortable.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cooked Brussels Sprouts?
Guinea pigs are supposed to eat only when green and as fresh vegetables. Most pet owners may think that it is okay to feed delicious cooked food to your guinea pigs, but no! Your guinea pig should not be given any cooked foods.
Guinea pigs don’t like the taste of cooked foods either. Not only that, but cooking also destroys all the essential vitamins or nutrients present in a vegetable. For example, in Brussel sprouts, a good portion of vitamin C is lost when it is cooked.
If your guinea pigs like to eat Brussel sprouts, then you should incorporate this vegetable into their diet weekly. Adding this wild cabbage will immensely benefit your guinea pig’s overall health.
Be careful and monitor the number of Brussel sprouts your pet consumes at a time. They might just love the vegetable so much and end up eating lots at a time.