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Overweight and Confused with Food

Janet PlymireJanet Plymire IllinoisMember Posts: 344
edited 15 February, 2008 in Food & Nutrition
My name is Cocoa and I am overweight. Now with that out of the way, my meowmy needs help understanding what food would be best to help me lose some weight. In December she started feeding us Eagle Holistic Select Anchovy, Sardine & Salmon Meal Formula. This food is supposed to help with my brother Bandits allergies, as well as weight management for me. I don\'t think it\'s working, as I still eat and eat. Meowmy thought since it had more protein it would fill me up more, but she noticed it also has lots more fat in it than our old food. She also gives us 1 can of Eagle Holistic Canned Salmon & Shrimp Formula bewteen the three of us a day. Can someone help her understand if the fat from a \"high quality\" food like Eagle is a better fat than from our old grocery store food, or is fat, fat? She has been doing research on different cat foods till she\'s dizzy, but still is confused on the fat content part. Meowmy and I would really appreciate any advice anyone can offer if they have gone through a time when they needed to lose weight. I used to be able to run and jump, but I can\'t do that anymore, I am even having a hard time just walking with all this weight. Purrs to everyone, Cocoa

Comments

  • victoria avictoria a Asheville, NCMember Posts: 2,371
    edited 4 February, 2008
    try grain free foods like natures variety instinct, orijen, wellness core.
  • Vanessa BobackVanessa Boback TampaMember Posts: 3,149
    edited 5 February, 2008
    Have you taken a trip to the vet? Just to rule any health issues out? Then I would take the advice of the above poster and try a grain free food and also you will have to portion it out. No more free feeding or you could develop many other issues. I know that\'s hard!!!! :-/ We are on Nature\'s Variety Instinct and LOOVVEEE it. Also Innova EVO canned food once a day and we have never had a weight problem. If you are having a hard time walking because of your weight, I would suggest feeding only canned food for a while in portioned sizes. Read the labels on the cans as a guideline for your ideal weight. Felidae is not a grain free food, but they have an \"light\" version for overweight kitties. Also, try and get some exercise, that may help to shed off the pounds. I found this great site with some facts on it about overweight cats. I only read a little bit, but it seemed very factual. http://www.thepetcenter.com/imtop/catweight.html (sorry I don\'t know how to make a link :r )
  • Nicole MartinNicole Martin CranfordMember Posts: 185
    edited 5 February, 2008
    Do you free feed your dry food? If so, that is probably the problem. When cats free feed they eat continually throughout the day which can cause then to over eat. Check the daily portion size on the back of the bag, your cats should get no more than that amount in most cases. Take into consideration that they also get canned food. Some manufacturers will give different portion recommendations if you are also feeding canned food. Those portion recommendations are also general so your cat may in fact need a little less. If you are still having issues, cutting out dry food all together may be a good idea. Contrary to popular belief, it does not clean their teeth and is generally not essential to their health or well being.
  • Jennifer SzucsJennifer Szucs ChathamMember Posts: 3,765
    edited 5 February, 2008
    Oliver is overweight to but he looks alot better then he used to. We tried everything and he always seemed starved. Now he eats Felidae platinum it is for seniors AND overweight cats. It works he gets the same amount as the other foods we tried but he doesnt eat all his food anymore not because he doesnt like it because he is full. He has lost weight already. Its the only thing that has worked for him.
  • Janet PlymireJanet Plymire IllinoisMember Posts: 344
    edited 5 February, 2008
    We are back from the vets and Cocoa has gained 4 more pounds since September! He\'s now 28 lbs. They did blood tests and all was fine except his Glucose was slightly elevated, but not high enough to worry yet according to vet. The big thing is to get him to lose weight, so he recommended Purina OM and that is what I will try. In my opinion the Eagle Pack was just too high of fat content (20%) and that is where the extra weight came on. I don\'t really like that OM dry is mainly grains, but I got OM canned, as well as dry and will feed mostly canned, and just put some dry in his bowl for over night. I have to try everything possible, because what we were doing before didn\'t work. It\'s going to be tough trying to measure and keep him satisfied throughout the day, but I have to be tough, his life is depending on it. Wish us good luck. I have to take him back in a month for a weighing and hopefully he will have lost.
  • Nicole MartinNicole Martin CranfordMember Posts: 185
    edited 6 February, 2008
    No food that is full of grains is going to help your cat loose weight, they are nothing but carbs. Especially if his glucose was slightly elevated. If he is gaining weight on the eagle pack then you cut back on how much you are feeding. I was sure if you answered this question before, do you free feed dry food? In most cats that are overweight that is the cause. Please check out the feline obesity link that was posted previously. They talk a lot about what kind of foods you should be feeding. While vets are undoubtedly the authority when it comes to medical health, they do not receive the same education in animal nutrition. They are taught about pet food by the very brands that they sell in their offices. These foods are often very low quality and owned by large corporations. This article will explain all of that and more: http://www.api4animals.com/facts.php?p=359&more=1 Sorry if I got too pushy there. It is just one my biggest pet peeves when vets mislead people. Educating people about pet food is also one of my passions. If you have any questions, feel free to pm me. Even if I don't know the answer, I work in the pet industry so I can find out direct from the manufacturers.
  • kate vonkkate vonk BoiseMember Posts: 1,313
    edited 6 February, 2008
    http://www.catinfo.org/feline_obesity.htm that website is a great resource. i too would go with a grain free diet. like wellness grain free canned, evo, or nature's variety instinct canned. i think those will be your best bets for losing weight. good luck ! :)
  • Janet PlymireJanet Plymire IllinoisMember Posts: 344
    edited 7 February, 2008
    I read the article recommended by Angel and I found it very interesting,although somewhat contradictory of other articles I have read. Here\'s one example: \"A recent fad, “low-carb” pet food, has some companies steering away from grains, and using potatoes, green peas, and other starchy vegetables as a substitute. Except for animals that are allergic to grains, dry low-carb diets offer no particular advantage to pets. They also tend to be very high in fat and, if fed free-choice, will result in weight gain. Canned versions are suitable for prevention and treatment of feline diabetes, and as part of a weight loss program, as well as for maintenance.\" If I understand this correctly, then this is perhaps why Cocoa gained 4 lbs in 5 months since I started feeding Eagle Holistic. Although it does state that canned food is best for weight loss and that is what I am now feeding most of. Another statement I found interesting is this: \"A lot of pet foods claim they contain “human grade” ingredients. This is a completely meaningless term — which is why the pet food companies get away with using it. The same applies to “USDA inspected” or similar phrases. The implication is that the food is made using ingredients that are passed by the USDA for human consumption, but there are many ways around this. For instance, a facility might be USDA-inspected during the day, but the pet food is made at night after the inspector goes home. The use of such terms should be viewed as a “Hype Alert.” Eagle Holistic as well as many others use this claim and it means nothing apparently. I do appreciate all the help, advice and great links that have educated me on the best foods to feed. I am now measuring Cocoa\'s food and am going to follow the vets advice and use the Purina OM, at least for awhile and hopefully Cocoa will lose some weight. Another question that has been playing in my thoughts is, when you take your pet to the vet with a health issue and the vets recommends one of their \"prescription\" foods and you don\'t want to feed that, how do you go about going against the vets recommendation. I felt I had to give it a try, because if I didn\'t and something went wrong I would never be able to forgive myself, and would have a hard time ever facing the vet again. And why aren\'t vets more educated on nutrition? That is such an important part of an animals health. Ok that\'s it for now, sorry for the long post, but I have all these questions and really value the information I receive from Cocoa\'s furriends. Purrs to everyone
  • Nicole MartinNicole Martin CranfordMember Posts: 185
    edited 12 February, 2008
    I'm sorry but I still haven't seen this anywhere in your posts, do you free feed? The low carb foods are not necessarily bad, it's when you free feed and your cats eats however much they want throughout the day that is the problem. All of the continuous eating turns into fat. It is much healthier for cats to be fed on a schedule. Much as they might try to convince you otherwise, you are not starving them by not having food available 24/7. Feeding exclusively canned food is also another excellent idea. Dry food is not essential and it doesn't clean their teeth like we once thought. If you ate cereal every meal, would it clean your teeth?
  • Karen LeeKaren Lee The kingdom of Mer-lotMember Posts: 89,020
    edited 12 February, 2008
    A lot of vets don't know much about proper nutrition :? They take a few classes in vet school and that's it. A lof of nutrition classes are funded by the big pet food comapnies like Hills and Purina so that's why many vets tell clients to feed those brands. If you don't want to feed prescription food, just nicely but firmly tell your vet that you do not want to feed prescription food because the ingredients are icky (or whatever your reason is). You are in charge of making decisions for your cat, not the vet. The vet can suggest food and treatment but if you feel that those aren't in your cat's best interests, then you can stand up to the vet and say no. A good vet will respect the pet owner's decision. Reducing daily calorie content and increasing excercise will also help shed the extra weight. It's suggested to feed about 20 calores per pound of ideal body weight. To find out how many calories are in food, see the food chart links I posted in this thread. Dry foods are very dense in calories per cup. Canned foods have much less calories per can so ideally you want to eat mostly canned food to lose weight. "Light" foods are only slightly lower in calories and much higher in carbs because they make up for the loss calories with high carb sources (fiber, grains, etc). Protein (ie meat) is expensive for pet food companies so they use as much meat as they can afford and add in fat as a sort of filler :?
  • Janet PlymireJanet Plymire IllinoisMember Posts: 344
    edited 13 February, 2008
    Thank you Merlin for that answer. Yes meowmy has been checking those food charts and comparing lots of the foods. She has also contacted a few food companies for information and samples. :D Angel yes I was being free fed and unfortunately I did\'t know when to stop eating. I would keep eating until all our bowls were empty and then I\'d pester meowmy until she\'d put more in them. Now I\'m getting mostly canned and just a little of my crunchy food for over night so meowmy can sleep. She\'s also picking up the other cats bowls when they are done eating so I don\'t eat their leftovers too. It\'s a little hard getting used to not having food in my bowl all the time, but I\'m getting regular feedings and good canned food, so maybe dieting won\'t be so bad MOL! Purrs from Cocoa
  • Janet PlymireJanet Plymire IllinoisMember Posts: 344
    edited 13 February, 2008
    Thank you Merlin for that answer. Yes meowmy has been checking those food charts and comparing lots of the foods. She has also contacted a few food companies for information and samples. :D Angel yes I was being free fed and unfortunately I did\'t know when to stop eating. I would keep eating until all our bowls were empty and then I\'d pester meowmy until she\'d put more in them. Now I\'m getting mostly canned and just a little of my crunchy food for over night so meowmy can sleep. She\'s also picking up the other cats bowls when they are done eating so I don\'t eat their leftovers too. It\'s a little hard getting used to not having food in my bowl all the time, but I\'m getting regular feedings and good canned food, so maybe dieting won\'t be so bad MOL! Purrs from Cocoa
  • Kat WhickerKat Whicker ToledoMember Posts: 1,695
    edited 15 February, 2008
    dont just assume that high protein i and grain free will help them lose weight. most grain free still has ALOT of fat. i dont really think grain free food help fat cats lose weight. i adopted a HUGE cat from a animal testing lab. she needed to loose weight ASAP or else it was gunna be a health problem. i fed her controlled portions of Wellness healthy weight. it has the least amount of fat in it of ALL the better foods. it also has l-cartine to burn and it isnt all fillers. punkin lost alot of weight on this food. ive tried other foods and she didnt lose any weight. you have to check labels to see how much fat is in the food. dont just get something because it says "natural or grain free" you as the owner has to read whats in it and check the fat content. good luck
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