Featured Dog Food Ingredient of the Month: Yucca
More than 40 species, all similar in anatomy, make up the members of the yucca family.
Hailing from arid regions of the US, Mexico, and Latin America, this root vegetable has been an important source of food and medicine for centuries. Its also a powerhouse of essential vitamins, minerals and plant-based nutrients. The closer researchers study this starchy, tuberous root the more health benefits they’re unearthing.
In both humans and animals alike, Yucca has been used to lesson symptoms and conditions associated with:
• High blood pressure
• Minor skin injuries
Other Health Benefits of Yucca
Be it from sunlight or environmental pollutants, when free radicals threaten to damage cells, antioxidants come to the body’s aid to help prevent or recover from harm. The oxidization process of these molecules creates stress in the body, and can manifest as threatening diseases like diabetes, cancer and others. Studies indicate that Yucca’s high concentrations of the antioxidant known as polyphenols can combat free radicals released by the sun’s UV rays. Other phytochemicals exert antioxidant properties that have the potential to protect blood platelets that can lead to cardiovascular disease.
Helps reduce the smell of fecal odor
Yucca schidigera extract is frequently added to pet food with the aim of reducing fecal odors. Read the dog food label and you’re likely to see it listed as its Latin Linnaean name. Kennel operators, animal clinics and pet owners who live in small spaces find this odor-reducing additive essential. But relief from strong pet smells is only the beginning. According to the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, “there is some evidence to suggest that adding functional ingredients to the diet can alter colonic fermentation and thereby reduce some of those nasty compounds that result in elimination odors.”
A Natural anti-inflammatory
Yucca’s active ingredients, like resveratrol and yuccaols, can wield serious anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic relief for pet sufferers. Used by indigenous populations for years, science is now backing the custom with tangible results. In a 2006 issue of “Journal of Inflammation”, researchers discuss their need to conduct additional testing to gather a complete understanding of the mechanisms yucca employs to treat and prevent arthritis in humans and animals.
Can regulate Diabetes and Cholesterol levels
Known for its rich carbohydrate makeup and high dietary fiber content, yucca provides an exceptional snack for diabetics. With nearly 4g of fiber per cup, the root is great at helping control weight and aid digestion. It also helps maintain blood sugar and cholesterol levels, according to one research study.
Ultimately, with the addition of this Lily Family root veggie to our superb quality dog food, we aim to help pet owners keep their animals healthy from the inside out.