The Importance of Digestibility
Digestibility is a measure of a food’s nutritional value and quality. The digestibility of pet food is the quantity of nutrients that can be absorbed from the intestine into the bloodstream. The proportion of these absorbed nutrients that are carried to tissues for the body to use is called nutrient bioavailability. Feeding your pets highly digestible foods means they will absorb a higher proportion of nutrients than feeding them foods with lower digestibility.
According to Mintel (2018), the main reason that pet owners purchase Grain Free food is that it is seen as having good digestibility. This could be linked to the rise in popularity and demand for Grain Free food. Pet owners are taking more of an active interest in what goes into the food that their pets are eating, and choosing foods that have a better digestibility and generally improve the health and wellbeing of their pets.
There are various pet food characteristics that influence the nutrient levels and overall product digestibility. These include:
● Recipe - This is the type and quantity of the ingredients in the product. As the
digestibility of ingredients varies significantly, the overall product digestibility is influenced by the digestibility and nutrient bioavailability of all the ingredients.
● Ingredient quality - Poorer ingredient quality decreases the digestibility, meaning pets won’t get the nutrients they need. Overall pet food digestibility is increased by the inclusion of higher quality ingredients.
● Processing - The correct processing techniques, cooking temperatures and storage procedures promote optimal nutrient bioavailability and digestibility. As an example, cooking with excessive heat damages protein, resulting in certain amino acids have a reduced bioavailability and decreased digestibility of the protein.
We Love Nutrition uses Freshtrusion™ Technology, which makes our freshly prepared meats highly digestible. Freshtrusion™ Technology operates by cooking the meat at a gentle temperature of 90°C, maintaining the freshness and protecting the protein within the meat.