ImmunoWall® and beetroot pulp are some of the ICC Brazil’s products offered to pet nutrition
The number of dogs and cats in Brazilian households increases every year. A survey carried out by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) in partnership with the Brazilian Association of the Pet Products Industry (Abinpet), showed that Brazil has the second largest population of pets in the world, with 22.1 million cats and 52.2 million dogs. Humanization of domestic animals contributes to an increasingly common nutritional disease: obesity. Pets follow the routine of scarce physical activity, sedentarism and bad eating habits of their owners. It is estimated that around 20% of Brazilian dogs are overweight.
According to Márcia Villaça, ICC Brazil Technical Sales Manager – Pet & Aqua, a Brazilian company specialized in ingredients and yeast-based additives, the fiber intake stimulates satiety and helps in the gastric emptying process, which is directly related to animal overweight issues. “Although dogs and cats are considered carnivorous animals, adding fiber to the diet, especially of dogs, is a fairly common procedure. The reason is due fibers ability to help the digestive process, contributing to the weight control and well-being of the pet,” she says.
Selecting a good fiber source is the key point to obtain the expected benefits. Beetroot pulp, an ICC Brazil product, is considered a “super fiber”, as it has moderate fermentation level, with 2/3 of insoluble fibers and 1/3 of soluble fibers – which are crucial for the digestive process. “Soluble fibers are viscous and form a gel that assists gastric emptying. In addition, they are related to the production of short-chain fatty acids. On the other hand, insoluble fibers do not form a gel and stimulate peristalsis (muscular contractions), which avoids constipation and helps gastric emptying. Thus, beetroot pulp is a great alternative for several dog and cat diets, including light diets for overweight animals. The pulp impacts the digestive system efficiency and the well-being,” explains Márcia.
The use of prebiotics based on β-Glucans and MOS, such as ImmunoWall®, is another mechanism to optimize the animal digestive process. These prebiotics act as immunomodulators, preventing the colonization of pathogenic bacteria and keeping the digestive system healthy. Food digestibility improves and overweight risk decreases. These fiber sources should be added in small amounts to the animal feed formula.
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