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10 Best Superfoods for Cats: Keep Your Cat Healthy & Happy!

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By Nicole Cosgrove

cat and pumpkin

Managing a healthy diet for ourselves can be difficult enough, but when it’s our cat’s diet that we have to plan out, it’s even more challenging. While cats can’t eat all the same foods that we can, some of the superfoods that we eat to stay healthy have many of the same benefits for our feline family members.

Things to Remember for Cat Nutrition

If you’ve heard of the term, “obligate carnivores,” when it comes to cats, you might be wondering how they can eat vegetables and berries. The key is moderation. While cats absorb most of their nutritional requirements from animal protein, they can still benefit from the boost that a few greens can give them.

Superfoods should never make up the majority of your cat’s diet, though. They have their downsides, and too many can cause stomach upset, vomiting, and diarrhea. These foods should enhance an existing healthy diet rather than work alone.

The 10 Best Superfoods for Cats:

1. Blueberries

blueberries
Image Credit: LC-click, Pixabay

Packed with vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber, blueberries have many benefits for your cat. Adding a few to your cat’s diet can help reduce muscle damage from jumping or playing, manage their insulin and glucose production, and keep their brain healthy. You might be surprised to know that blueberries are used in many high-quality, commercial cat foods!

Blueberries also contain nutrients that reduce the risk of cancer and heart issues, along with being low in calories. You can safely give these fruits to your cat without worrying about their weight.


2. Broccoli

Broccoli
Image Credit: ExplorerBob, Pixabay

While blueberries can be served raw, broccoli is best steamed when given to your cat. Softening the vegetable will make it easier for your kitty to digest. Filled with antioxidants and compounds like sulforaphane, broccoli is a great way to lessen the symptoms of arthritis and dementia.

Its fiber content also makes broccoli one of the best choices for alleviating constipation if your cat is having that issue. It’s important to not give your cat too much broccoli, though. While the fiber content can help their digestion, too much can cause diarrhea.

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3. Carrots

carrots on a table
Image Credit: congerdesign, Pixabay

Used in moderation to prevent your cat from having issues digesting them, carrots are a good superfood. Like blueberries, carrots are used in many high-quality cat food recipes. Softened by cooking and used in moderation, they can help support your cat’s eyesight.

The beta-carotene content is what helps here because it is converted into vitamin A. While your cat can’t convert beta-carotene into vitamin A as well as many other animals can — which is why moderation is important — they can still benefit from the health boost.


4. Cranberries

cranberries
Image Credit: Alexey Hulsov, Pixabay

Well-loved among humans for their usefulness when it comes to urinary tract infections, cranberries offer the same support to cats. The antioxidants, vitamin C, and fiber all help promote your cat’s digestive, immune, urinary, and kidney health. These berries can also help prevent cancer.

Cranberries are a little tart, though, and some cats might dislike the flavor if they eat them whole. For particularly fussy felines, you can use supplements instead, as these have the same benefits.


5. Dandelion

dandelions on a board
Image Credit: art kitchen, Shutterstock

It might sound a little strange, but dandelions are a cheap way to boost your cat’s health if you see them nibbling on the grass in your garden. While dandelions might seem unassuming with their weed-like tendencies and bright yellow flowers, they can help your cat’s allergies, boost their nutrition, and detoxify their liver.

The whole plant is useful, and you can give your cat the roots, leaves, and the flower itself. Dandelions are also super easy to prepare. Wash them thoroughly, dice the whole plant, dry out the pieces, and then store them in airtight containers like regular herbs. You don’t need to add much to your cat’s food either — a small sprinkling will be more than ample.

A word of caution: Make sure to collect dandelions from areas that you know are free from pesticides and chemicals.


6. Eggs

Hard-Boiled Egg
Image Credit: happyrich358, Pixabay

Cooked eggs — whether baked, boiled, fried, poached, or scrambled — are super healthy treats for your cat. They’re full of protein, natural fats, thiamine, lysine, amino acids, and natural fats. Eggs also contain vitamins A, B12, D, E, and K.

Raw eggs, on the other hand, are less healthy to offer your cat. They can carry salmonella, and a protein in the whites inhibits your cat’s ability to absorb vitamin B biotin, a nutrient that supports their skin and coat health.


7. Lean Meat

raw beef meat
Image Credit: PDPhotos, Pixabay

It’s no surprise that meat is on the list of superfoods for your cat. Lean meat, without excessive or visible fat, is filled with protein, iron, and vitamin B. You can give your cat cooked chicken, beef, or pork to help support their health.

Provided that you don’t use sauces or seasonings, it doesn’t matter how you cook the meat. For frying, though, try to use a minimal amount of oil or butter. Fat trimmings can increase the risk of your cat developing pancreatitis.


8. Oily Fish

Pacific canned pink salmon_Louella938_shutterstock
Image Credit By: Louella938, shutterstock

Cats can benefit from the omega fatty acids in most fish, especially anchovies, salmon, and sardines. You don’t need to feed them much, and you can freeze the leftovers for treats later on. Just remember to defrost and serve them at room temperature. Cats can be fussy about frozen food.

Although tuna is a common treat for cats, it’s actually not one of the best options for your feline. Tuna contains mercury, and consuming too much of it can be toxic.

When you prepare fish for your feline, avoid adding sauces and spices.


9. Plain Yogurt

Plain yogurt in small bowl
Image Credit: Profet77, Pixabay

Yogurt is a good superfood for your cat. Whole-milk yogurt in particular contains protein, calcium, and probiotics that support several of your cat’s internal workings, from their digestion to their bones. While most cats are lactose intolerant, most of the lactose in yogurt is broken down during the culturing process. That said, if you do decide to give yogurt to your cat, start with a tiny amount to make sure it won’t bother sensitive stomachs.

Also, stick with plain yogurt. It can be tempting to give them a bite of your strawberry-flavored yogurt or even vanilla, but you need to avoid both. Unsweetened, plain yogurt is the best in this case.


10. Pumpkin

sliced pumpkin on a table
Image Credit: Steve Buissinne, Pixabay

Pumpkin can be given to your cat cooked and cut into small pieces or puréed. Unlike other vegetables, canned pumpkin is safe for your cat provided that it’s completely plain without any additives, spices, or flavorings.

Not only is pumpkin filled with carotenoids, potassium, antioxidants, and vitamins A and C, but it’s also filled with fiber. It’s a good way to support your cat’s digestive system, alleviate constipation, and even prevent hairballs.

What Are Superfoods?

If you haven’t heard of the term, “superfood,” it refers to foods packed with nutrition. They’re a well-known addition to most diets and give our bodies an extra health boost while ensuring that our nutritional needs are met. While they’re not quite good enough to take the place of a healthy, balanced diet, you won’t go wrong by adding them to your meal plan.

One easy way to do this is by feeding your cat a great fresh food!

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What Human Foods Should Cats Not Eat?

It can be easy to assume that all superfoods are safe, but where cats are concerned, that isn’t the case. Cats have a different constitution, and their nutritional requirements aren’t the same as ours. While this list of superfoods contains several safe human foods for cats, there are many options that you should never give your feline at all.

Human foods that are toxic to cats include:
  • Alcohol
  • Avocado
  • Caffeine
  • Chocolate
  • Chives
  • Citrus
  • Garlic
  • Grapes
  • Nuts
  • Onions
  • Raisins
  • Raw eggs and meat
  • Salty food
  • Xylitol
  • Yeast dough

Keep in mind that this list isn’t all-inclusive, and you should always make sure the food that you give your cat is safe for them before allowing them to eat it.

Giving your pet the highest quality nutrition is a top priority, so why not give them a food and water dish to match? The Hepper Nom Nom Bowl is our product, but it’s too good not to share.

Made from food-safe stainless steel, you can ensure that your pet is consuming the best nutrition out of the finest bowls on the market. Click here to get yours.

Conclusion

Cats might not be able to eat as much human food as dogs can, but they can still benefit from a few superfoods. Added to a balanced diet, the right superfood will give your feline a variety of health boosts, from digestive support to their fur condition.

 

Featured Image Credit: guvo59, Pixabay

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