Linda Arndt ~ Canine Nutritional Consultant

Grain Free Pet Foods - Healthy Carbohydrates


When designing a grain free pet food, we still have to recognize that some carbohydrates are important for nutritional value and fiber. In some grain free foods, they like to use potato (white) and this becomes a problem for dogs with diabetes, systemic yeast or cancer. That is why grain free foods I recommend are those with garbanzo bean (chick peas) and yellow peas, due to their low glycemic  index. In other words they BURN slower and do not make the sugar spike in the body like other carbohydrates.

The Holistic Grain Free pet foods that I recommend that contain healthy carbohydrates are the following two foods. These are my preference, but I have also listed some others if you are unable to get either of these foods, which can also be rotated and they do support growth even for giant breeds. They are not out of the calorie range that is too high for growth. Just don't free feed any large/giant breeds and go by my feed chart:

Precise Holistic Complete Grain Free Lamb/Turkey  27%protein 17% fat
Calories 409 per cup
Precise Holistic Complete Grain Free Pork - 26% protein 16% fat
Calories 411 per cup

Note: All of the Precise Grain Free foods CAN be fed to a dog with systemic yeast issues.
Nutri Source Grain Free - Heartland Select Bison - 25 protein 15% fat - Calories 432 per cup
Nutri Source Grain Free - Heartland Select Seafood - 25 % protein/15% fat - Calories 432 per cup
Nutri Source Grain Free - Heartland Select Chicken - 28% protein 18% fat - Calories 473 per cup
Nutri Source Grain Free - Heartland Select Lamb - 28% protein - 18% fat - Calories 506 per cup

Note: These foods CAN be used for dogs on a systemic yeast program because there is no potato in them. The GF Lamb and the GF Chicken are very calorie dense foods and not for large/giant breed puppy growth. The Lamb and Chicken are "working dog" foods due to their high calorie count. _____________________________________________________________________________
Nutri Source Grain Free Large Breed Adult Chicken - 23% protein 14% fat - Calories 489 per cup
Nutri Source Grain Free Large Breed Lamb Adult - 23% protein - 14% fat- Calories 441 per cup

Note: These two GF foods work well for healthy dogs with no system yeast issues and for Large/Giant Breed Adults. I have not done growth trials on these two foods for giant puppies, but if you want to feed one of them I would suggest the Lamb because it has a lower calorie count per cup. Once the calories get much over 400 calories per cup you really have to watch your dogs growth carefully.  For dogs that are not currently in a systemic yeast removal program,  the sweet potato in these two foods a valuable beta carotene nutritional component for healthy dogs.

PureVita Grain Free Adult -Bison - 26% protein 15% fat - Calories 462 per cup
PureVita Grain Free Adult Salmon - 24% protein 16% fat - Calories 454 per cup
PureVita Grain Free Adult Turkey - 24% protein 16% fat - Calories 454 per cup

Note: These foods are good food for healthy dogs but NOT appropriate for dogs on a systemic yeast removal program due to the sweet potato component in the foods.

All the foods I have listed above have spring yellow peas as a healthy low glycemic carbohydrate.
Here is a good article from WebMD that explains more about spring yellow peas and how they are a healthy carbohydrate. Spring yellow peas are in all of the foods I have listed above.

To Purchase Precise Pet foods.

Yellow Pea Flour a Healthy, Inexpensive Way to Create Lower Glycemic Index Foods
ByJennifer Warner
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

Oct. 28, 2009 -- Yellow pea flour may help prevent and manage type 2diabetes by replacing whole wheat flour as an ingredient in creating low glycemic index foods.
A new study suggests that yellow pea flour may be an inexpensive substitute for wheat flour to create healthier, low glycemic index versions of typically high glycemic index foods, such as cookies, breads, and pasta.

The glycemic index (GI) of a food refers to the spike in blood sugar (glucose) levels produced after eating it. High glycemic index foods produce a more rapid spike in blood sugar levels, which can be dangerous for people with type 2 diabetes who need to keep their blood sugar levels under control to prevent complications.

Researchers say pulses, including yellow peas, are now being studied as potential functional ingredients in foods because they possess a number of health benefits. They are high in fiber, protein, and antioxidants and are low in fat. Eating whole pulses has also been shown to lower glucose levels after meals.

But they say few studies have looked at the feasibility of producing foods with pulse-derived ingredients that are good to eat as well as good for you.

Low GI Flour Alternative

In the study, published in the Journal of Food Science, researcher Christopher Marinangeli, MSc, RD, of the University of Manitoba and colleagues created banana bread, biscotti, and pasta using whole yellow pea flour. They then compared the glucose responses of 19 healthy men and women who ate the new yellow pea flour and traditional whole wheat flour versions of the foods.

The results showed that whole yellow pea flour banana bread and biscotti produced lower glycemic responses compared to white bread, and whole yellow pea flour biscotti produced a more favorable glycemic index response than whole wheat flour biscotti.
The whole yellow pea flour pasta, however, did not show any difference in glycemic index response compared to traditional whole wheat pasta. Researchers say this may be because of the pasta’s exposure to water during cooking, which may affect absorption of the carbohydrates from the pasta.

The participants rated the appearance, smell, taste, texture, and overall appeal of the foods on a scale of one (dislike very much) to five (like very much). All of the whole yellow pea flour foods scored above a 3 on all categories except “texture” for the biscotti, which had an average rating of 2.6 in that category, and “smell” for the whole yellow pea flour pasta, which scored an average of 2.9.

Researchers conclude that the results support the use of whole yellow pea flour as an alternative ingredient in producing "tasty, low glycemic foods that help prevent and manage type 2 diabetes.”

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