Everyone loves oranges, but we consume them without the peel. We use the peel for aromatic recipes or desserts and for decorations. Our guinea pigs can eat oranges and they will get the most vitamin C from them. But, let’s see if they can eat the orange peel.
Can guinea pigs eat orange peels? Guinea pigs can eat the orange peels. In fact, it also contains lots of vitamin C, just as the orange flesh itself. However, certain precautions must be taken before the guinea pig consumes them due to the risks of pesticides and chemicals or dirt. So the washed peels can be given in moderation.
Many owners claim that the cavies literally grab the orange peel and devour it in seconds. In this article, we will cover information about orange peels including its risk and benefits. So, continue reading!
Are Orange Peels Good for Guinea Pigs? | Health Benefits
- Prevention of cancers – The guinea pigs will be safe from most cancers due to the limonene, phytochemicals and the flavonoids in the peel.
- Prevention from scurvy – Since the orange peel has lots of vitamin C, just as the orange flesh, this will keep your guinea pig safe from scurvy. This problem can causes internal bleedings, loss of appetite, rough fur, and diarrhea to the guinea pigs.
- Very nutritious – The peel has calories, proteins, and carbs, too.
- Good digestion – There are fibers in the peel. This serve in moderation to avoid diarrhea in the guinea pig.
- Healthy cardiovascular system – With zero cholesterol, the cardiovascular system will be in good health.
- Antioxidants – The immunity will get a boost with this antioxidant and all organs will be healthy too.
- No stress and better sleep – The B6 vitamin will make your guinea pig more relaxed, happy, and it will improve its sleep too!
Nutrition Facts of Orange Peels
These are the nutrients contained in the orange peels:
- Flavonoids – The orange peel contains many flavonoids which bring a lot of benefits. Some of them are called hesperidin and polymethoxyflavones. The hesperidin is seen in many fruits of this kind – citrus fruits. It is medicinal and prevents veins problems, bad circulation, and even hemorrhoids. The polymethoxyflavones reduce inflammation, allergies, act as antioxidants and prevents certain cancers.
- Phytochemicals – These compounds are the pigments, aroma and the taste itself of plants. When consumed, they prevent cancer, heart problems, eyesight issues and can boost the immunity.
- Limonene – This compound is 90% of the oil in the orange peel. It can prevents cancer, especially skin cancer.
- Vitamin C – Believe it or not, but just one teaspoon of this peel has an astonishing 8.2 mg of vitamin C! This is a lot for the peel only, and this vitamin is the best to keep the guinea pig alive and healthy.
- A good amount of calories – In 100 g (3 oz) of orange peel, there are 97 calories. This is great because it is not too high or low in calories, considering you won’t feed the guinea pig such an amount of peel.
- Carbs and proteins – In the peel, there are 25 g carbs and 1.5 g of proteins. For just the peel, this is very nutritious.
- Fibers – 10.6 g. They are essential for healthy digestion and bowel movements.
- No cholesterol – This only means a healthy cardiovascular system and unclogged blood vessels.
- Riboflavin – This nutrient breaks down the fats, proteins, and carbs into energy. It also promotes better oxygen flow in the organism.
- Thiamin – This is the B1 vitamin and it prevents problems with the nerves, heart, muscles, stomach, intestines, and brain too. It also brings electrolytes in all muscles and nerves.
- Niacin – The B3 or niacin, lowers cholesterol and eases the pains in the body.
- Vitamin A – This is a strong antioxidant which prevents almost all diseases. Keeps the health of the eyes, skin, muscles, heart, vision, kidneys, lungs and boosts the immunity.
- Vitamin B6 – This vitamin reduces stress and anxiety. It can also boosts the happiness hormone ‘serotonin,’ and helps with better sleep.
- Calcium – The whole peel of one orange has 10 mg of calcium. This mineral is vital for strong bones, but it harms the guinea pigs when they are fully grown. Even just a bit of the orange peel would still contain calcium. So, this is another reason to serve it in moderation to avoid urinary complications for the guinea pig.
Are Orange Peels Bad for Guinea Pigs? | Possible Risks
- Urinary system complications – The orange peel contains calcium. Even in a small amount, calcium creates urinary stones in the guinea pig’s bladder and kidneys. If not treated right away, it can be fatal!
- Problems with digestion – Because the peel has fibers, limit it to a moderate amount to avoid diarrhea and indigestion.
- Toxicity from chemicals or pesticides/herbicides – Another risk is that the peel might contain some remains of pesticides and chemicals. This can cause respiratory problems in guinea pigs, nausea, and stomach aches that will cause an urgent visit to the vet! Make sure that you buy oranges that are organic if you can.
Serving Size and Frequency of Orange Peels for Guinea Pigs
Feeding guinea pigs a few pieces of orange peel with other vegetables can assist to minimize the acidic impact on their stomachs and digestive systems.
Guinea pigs are susceptible to a variety of illnesses and disorders, including scurvy, due to a shortage of vitamin C in their bodies. Thus, do not overfeed them.
They’ll stay healthy and happy if you give them a few pieces of the peel. Because of the sugar content and calcium as well, limit oranges to 2 times per week. Before serving, the orange peels should also be properly rinsed.
Quick Facts on the Oranges
The following are some of the quick facts about oranges:
- The orange is actually a type of hybrid between mandarin and pomelo.
- The oranges were even mentioned in the literature of China, back in 314 BC.
- The orange trees are the most cultivated tree type worldwide.
- The original name of the orange color was ‘geoluhread’ or ‘yellow-red.’
- If the navel spot on the orange is big, the orange tastes sweeter.
- There are over 600 orange tree types all over the world.
- The peel of an orange is used a lot in aromatherapy with peel-based oils – same goes for the perfume industry
We have also made a full list of foods that guinea pigs can and can’t eat (150+ Types of Foods). Be sure to also check our recommended products page for everything you will ever need to assure a happy life for your guinea pigs. Hope this information was helpful and you have found the answer you were looking for.
List of Sources
The Effect of Cellulose on Crystal Formation in the Kidneys of Guinea Pigs Fed Diet Rich in Calcium and Sodium
Diet Composition and Mineral Balance in Guinea Pigs
Determination of the Vitamin C Content of Conventionally and Organically Grown Fruits by Cyclic Voltammetry