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People often ask us what they can do with their dog’s diet to help the dog lose weight. Even when their dogs are on a low calorie diet, they often say their dogs aren’t losing weight or have only lost a little. So we’ve been telling them about the green bean diet. It’s a diet many people have never heard of. Very simply, this diet reduces the amount of kibble by up to 50% and substitutes green beans, which are low in calories and higher in fiber. Because of the extra fiber, it works by causing a feeling of fullness, which decreases food consumption while reducing calorie intake. Experiments have proven that it works.
This diet is not without its risks however. For some dogs, reducing kibble by 50% could be too severe. It can potentially cause problems in dogs who have undiagnosed medical conditions. This type of diet also needs to be combined with the right kind of exercise so the dog doesn’t lose muscle mass because of the reduced protein intake. If you have any concerns about this diet, we always recommend that you speak with your veterinarian.
Since dogs don’t easily digest fiber, you should pulse the green beans in a food processor or chop them finely in some other way to ensure your dog can get the nutrients from the green beans. You may also want to give your dog a high quality supplement to make sure he’s getting all the nutrients he needs and that he may not be getting due to the kibble reduction.
When people ask our advice, we typically recommend about a 25% to 30% reduction in kibble with that percentage made up with green beans. We also recommend that people completely eliminate dog treats, since most of them are so high in calories. Instead, we tell them to give frozen green beans, celery, baby carrots, pieces of apple, and such as treats. They are low in calories and healthy.
Combined with proper exercise, we’ve seen the green bean diet work to help dogs lose weight. If your dog is overweight, we encourage you to give this a try. And if you would like more information, please contact us at 407-295-3888. We’d be happy to help.