Each part of the cat’s digestive system helps you digest and absorb the essential nutrients for your general well-being and health. What makes the digestive system healthy and what can you do to help it?
The cat’s digestive system plays a fundamental role in its general health. What favors the health of the digestive tract?
How the cat’s digestive system works
The cat’s digestive system is responsible for digesting food and absorbing the nutrients that the body needs. The gastrointestinal tract is where the microbiota resides, which includes “beneficial” bacteria, which contributes to digestive health, favoring overall health when it is balanced and helping to process food and nutrients. The digestive system also includes a large number of immune system cells, which means that your cat’s gastrointestinal tract is one of the first places where the immune system encounters possible pathogens or other elements that may require an immune response. .
However, a cat can have a sensitive digestive system. As a consequence, the cat may be sensitive to sudden changes in its diet and any variation can cause digestive disorders. They also usually eat more frequently than people, although small amounts. The cat approaches its bowl of food several times a day and each time it eats a small amount that the digestive system then processes.
The role of diet in the cat’s digestive system
A healthy digestive system is one that effectively absorbs the nutrients that the animal needs for optimal health. Therefore, the diet, including its digestibility and nutritional composition, directly influences the health of the digestive system and health in general.
Unlike other mammals, cats cannot synthesize certain nutrients that are necessary for effective functioning. These include taurine (found in proteins), certain fatty acids, vitamin D and vitamin A. The cat’s diet should include these essential nutrients to ensure their general well-being and health.
Cats have high protein requirements, superior to dogs and humans, that the body uses for cell regeneration (including claw cells, antibodies or hair). This protein contains 11 essential amino acids, including taurine, which every cat needs; Without taurine, they can suffer retinal degeneration and heart problems.
Much of the energy provided by the diet is due to fat that can also contribute to the health of your digestive system and to overall health. For example, the cat needs specific fatty acids for the regeneration of skin cells and to maintain their protective function in good condition. However, the fat content in the diet must be adequate since an excess can lead to obesity and other problems such as digestive sensitivity in some cats
One of the key components of your cat’s diet that helps maintain your digestive health is fiber, both soluble and insoluble. Insoluble fiber stimulates intestinal transit and increases stool volume; Soluble fiber acts as a “gelling” agent that can slow the transit in the stomach and small intestine. A nutritionally complete food will have an adequate balance of these fibers in order to maintain digestive health.
Prebiotics are another important component of a cat’s diet to ensure optimal nutrient absorption and digestive system functioning. These favor the proliferation of “beneficial” intestinal bacteria that contribute to the digestive health of the animal. Prebiotics positively affect the microflora in the cat’s digestive tract.
Your digestive tract is delicate and you need the proper care to stay healthy and function effectively. If you are not sure how to maintain your cat’s digestive well-being, consult your veterinarian.