We all know that vegetables are healthy for us to eat, but have you ever wondered if certain vegetables are also safe for your guinea pig? Guinea pigs can benefit from fresh vegetables, like carrots and bell peppers, as a healthy snack. If you want to know can guinea pigs eat fresh green beans, this article will dive into that topic in detail.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Fresh Green Beans?
Yes, guinea pigs can eat fresh green beans in small doses but avoid giving your cavy frozen or cooked green beans.
For starters, green beans (small doses) aren’t going to have a negative impact on the health and well-being of your guinea pigs but will instead improve their health thanks to all the vitamin C that they have.
People need vitamin C and pretty significant dosages on a day-to-day basis, but vitamin C is even more important for guinea pigs – especially since there are a lot of foods, they eat that aren’t quite as rich in vitamin C as fresh green beans.
On the flip side, there are other biochemicals inside of fresh green beans that will really do a number on the digestive system and overall health of your guinea pig that we as much larger human beings don’t have to worry about.
We are talking about the calcium and phosphorus in fresh green beans that can be pretty devastating to guinea pigs, especially if they are consuming pretty large amounts of green beans on a regular basis.
Nutritional Information of Green Beans
Fresh green beans are filled with healthy vitamins, minerals, that won’t only to improve your health and well-being but will improve the health and well-being of your guinea pig, too.
On top of the vitamin C that we mentioned earlier (as well as the calcium and the phosphorus) green beans also have quite a bit of vitamin A, a decent amount of iron, a considerable amount of vitamin B, and some extra magnesium, potassium, and sodium.
Green beans aren’t exactly swimming in protein for humans, but they do have 1.8 g of protein per cup of green beans which is a good amount for your guinea pig. You’ll never want to give that many green beans to a guinea pig (especially not in one sitting), but they’ll still get a bit of protein with each bean that you do share with them.
Benefits Green Beans Provide to Guinea Pigs
The biggest benefit of feeding green beans to your guinea pig definitely has to be the heart health benefits.
Green beans have quite a bit of potassium and fiber that will work to lower blood pressure in guinea pigs (and people), while at the same time reducing risk of stroke and heart disease as well as other cardiovascular issues.
Commercially available guinea pig food sometimes include higher amounts of sugar and fat than they really should be getting, which can be one reason why some guinea pigs have heart issues.
The Vitamin A that green beans provide will also go a long way towards helping improve the eyesight of your guinea pigs. Vitamin A helps to push back against ocular degeneration, allowing your guinea pig to see more clearly throughout their lives in a way that they might not have been able to before.
The vitamin C in green beans will help to boost your guinea pig’s immune system, helping to streamline overall body functions, and generally just helping to improve their health and wellness.
How Often Can Guinea Pigs Eat Green Beans?
It’s probably not a good idea to give your guinea pigs green beans on a daily basis, but you really can’t go wrong giving them a couple green beans two or three times a week.
You can slice and dice those beans and mix them in with their traditional food (makes it easier to eat and reduces choking hazards) or you can wash them and give them one bean as a treat. You’ll just want to make sure that you aren’t ever over feeding them green beans because there can be some potential hazards.
Potential Hazards in Feeding Green Beans to Your Guinea Pig
One potential hazard of feeding your guinea pig too many green beans is too much calcium. Too much calcium in your guinea pig’s diet can cause bladder stones to build up, and green beans are absolutely loaded in calcium (containing 37 mg per 100 g).
On top of that, the lectins that are found in green beans has the potential to cause some digestive issues. The oxalates that are found in green beans and all carbohydrates that your furry little family members consume and your pet could experience constipation and bloating
Calcium and phosphorus work to inhibit the absorption of magnesium in the body. This means that your guinea pig could develop a magnesium deficiency if they consume too many green beans on a regular basis.
Although there are some hazards, overall, green beans are good to give your guinea pig as long as you do so in moderation.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Frozen Green Beans?
Frozen green beans might be convenient for human consumption but it’s a good idea to stay away from them for your guinea pig.
The unfreezing process can accumulate a lot of bacteria that is harmful to your guinea pig. To play it safe never give your guinea pig any frozen vegetables.
Can Guinea Pigs Eat Cooked Green Beans?
Cooking green beans should also be avoided at all costs.
Cooked foods are going to be really hard for your guinea pig to digest and the actual cooking process wipes out a lot of the nutritional benefits they would have delivered to your pet from the fresh green beans. Combine that with the fact that cooking them in fats, oils, and with seasonings can introduce all kinds of things that your guinea pig shouldn’t be putting into their body and this becomes a no-brainer to avoid.
At the end of the day, as long as you stick to fresh green beans your guinea pig can benefit from eating this vegetable. Remember to go with 100% fresh green beans, not frozen, and not cooked green beans.
Also, make sure to not give your guinea pig too many green beans too often to avoid the potential hazards. A full green bean a couple times is a week is the perfect addition to your little cavy’s diet plan.
Does your guinea pig like fresh green beans? Let me know in the comments!