Why are cereals good for the health of our dogs?

Cereals are a complete, natural ingredient that plays an important role in creating a balanced and nutritionally correct diet.

Normally cereals tend to be associated only with carbohydrates, but this is a rather narrow view. Rich with carbohydrates, cereals are no doubt an extraordinary source of energy, but in terms of nutrition they are complete because they contain proteins, vitamins, minerals, fibre, and fatty acids.

The nutritional power of cereals is supported by many scientific studies and consolidated over 30 years of direct experience in the field. On the other hand, there is no scientific evidence to support their exclusion from a dog’s diet, unless in cases of clinically proven intolerance and/or allergy. Luckily, recent studies have highlighted the fact that negative reactions to food caused by cereals in pets are extremely rare and often due to genetics and type of breed.

Based on deep knowledge of the nutritional power of cereals, ImperialFood has always chosen to include this category of ingredients in its dog food formulations.

The main types of cereals included in ImperialFood formulas are maize and rice. Both have beneficial properties for dogs, as explained below.

MAIZE is an extraordinary source of CARBOHYDRATES (74 – 78 %), PROTEINS (8 – 9 %) and FAT. It’s an ingredient that contains high levels of energy (350 kcal/100g); therefore, it’s essential to maintaining the right energy intake. It has a high biological value, because it contains proteins (zein and zeatin) high in essential amino acids and, last but not least, it is rich with lipids, monosaturated and polysaturated fat, soluble and insoluble fibre, as well as vitamins and minerals, of which the most important are vitamin E, magnesium and potassium, which support the nervous system and can help prevent cardiovascular diseases and diabetes.

From a nutraceutical point of view, MAIZE is also an extraordinary source of biologically active substances as it contains carotenoids, tocopherols and phenolic compounds that despite not having a nutrition function as such, play a significant role during food digestion and assimilation.

Once MAIZE has been properly cooked and subject to an extrusion process that gelatinises its starch, it can be assimilated quickly and is highly digestible. In fact, the level of digestibility of vegetable proteins (maize, soy, rice, etc.) is estimated between 75% and 54%.

Additionally, other beneficial effects of MAIZE include the following: it slows metabolism, strengthens the immunity system, helps purify the liver and kidneys, improves intestinal functions, and improves skin and coat condition.

RICE, like MAIZE, is considered one of the best cereals for a dog’s diet, because it is rich with precious nutritional properties.

By nature, RICE is a highly digestible cereal. This special characteristic is enhanced by the cooking and extrusion process the cereal undergoes during the preparation of dog food.

Strictly from a nutritional point of view, RICE is a great source of slow release carbohydrate energy (91%).

Additionally, RICE provides a wide range of minerals (iron, calcium, potassium, iodine, zinc, magnesium, sodium), fibre, proteins (7.5%) and a number of vitamins (including vitamin A, vitamin C and some B vitamins).
RICE is a great ingredient to include in all dogs’ diets and is particularly good for dogs that have chronic or temporary digestive and/or assimilation issues.