In my previous posts, I described protein, and then talked about what essential amino acids are. In summary, amino acids are the building blocks for the enzymes that your dog needs in order to be healthy. Your dog’s cells can produce all amino acids except for what are called Essential Amino Acids. A dog has to injest essential amino acids in order to stay healthy.
This has important implications if you are making your dog’s food. Different types of food has different types of ratios of amino acids. In fact a lot of plants are missing some essential amino acids. So you need to make sure that the protein content of your dogs food contains a balance of amino acids in the ratio that your dog needs.
This sounds more difficult than it actually is. Most meat will contain a good amount of essential amino acids, and any excess will be excreted in your dogs urine. So don’t let this scare you away from cooking for your dog. In fact a lot of dog food manufacturers will dump chemically synthesized amino acids into the food, so that they can claim that they have a “complete food”. I plan on getting into this on later posts, but I beleive that the best way for a dog to get all its nutrition is the natural way – through fresh food – not through chemicals.
In any case, in order to make absolutely sure that Tsuki is getting the correct balance of protien, I like to supplement her food with a few foods, one of which is Bee Pollen.
All flowers contain male and female reproductive elements. Pollen is the male spore of a plant. In order to reproduce, a plant will release their spores and hopefully a spore will come into contact with a flower stigma, which completes the reproduction cycle. Where do bees fit in? Bees collect pollen because it has a great diversity of nutrients. Flowers have evolved to accept animals like bees because it allows them to spread their pollen more efficiently.
The great thing about the pollen collected from bees is that bees have a great ability to collect only the best, most nutritious pollen. Besides honey, pollen is all that bees eat. So bees have evolved to know which pieces are the best, and only collect those. The bees then add honey or nectar to the pollen and an enzyme that prevents the pollen from germinating. The bees then carry it back to the hive. The bee pollen that we eat is collected from small traps outside the hive, created so that bees drop some of the pollen that they have collected.
Bee pollen contains all essential and non-essential amino acids. Bee pollen has more protein than than the same size of red meat! Besides this, bee pollen contains nearly every known vitamin and mineral necessary for a healthy diet. It is loaded with antioxidants and has been shown to have anti-microbial activity.
Bee Pollen is a great supplement to add to your dog’s food. Along with other supplements, it can ensure that your dog is getting all the nutrients that your dog needs in a healthy, natural way!