Jicama is growing more and more popular in the United States as a healthy food option for people and some pets.
So, can bearded dragons eat Jicama? Yes, Absolutely! Your bearded dragon can snack on this healthy treat that is not only sweet but also packed with vitamins and nutrients.
You can feed your beardie some grated pieces from time to time as a treat in moderation. However, some parts of the Jicama plant are toxic if ingested, so you should be careful. Read on to learn more.
What Is Jicama?
Jicama, scientific name Pachyrhizus erosus, is a plant that originates from Mexico. Its root is also called the Mexican yam bean, Mexican potato, or Mexican turnip. While it is still rare in the United States, it is gaining ground in many households and among pet owners.
The Jicama has white, fleshy roots that are edible and have a starchy flavor, kind of like a potato. It is high in vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber while maintaining a low sugar and fat content. However, as mentioned, some parts of the plant – the seeds and skin – are toxic to both animals and plants.
Benefits of Jicama for Your Bearded Dragon
Jicama is an excellent treat for your beardie thanks to the following key merits of the plant:
Jicama has a very extensive nutrient profile. Most of its calorie content is derived from carbohydrates, with the rest coming from trace amounts of protein and fat. Besides this, the plant is rich in fiber, vitamins, essential minerals, and other nutrients like:
– Vitamin E
– Vitamin B6
– Pantothenic acid
Jicama has a high water and fiber content but very low-calorie amounts, which makes it great for helping your beardie maintain a healthy weight.
- Weight Loss
Since Jicama has a low calory count, it helps prevent weight gain in your lizard friend. Its high fiber and water content also ensure your beardie feels full after consuming a small portion, ensuring it does not overheat. Additionally, the root contains a prebiotic fiber called inulin that has been shown to affect the hormones responsible for sending hunger and fullness signals to the brain.
- Improved Digestion
Fiber is a fundamental part of your beardie’s diet because it helps improve his stool bulk, improve digestion, and prevent constipation problems. One cup of Jicama contains 6.5 grams of fiber and is more than enough to meet your beardie’s dietary needs. In fact, research shows that this plant can improve bowel movement frequency by more than 30 percent, preventing constipation.
How to Prepare Jicama for Your Beardie
Jicama is very versatile and can be eaten cooked or raw. If you decide to go with the former option, all you need to do is boil the peeled root in water for a few minutes or bake it in the oven for one or two hours. A baked Jicama root has a crispy consistency that your bearded dragon might enjoy.
Since the Jicama’s skin is toxic, you should always peel the root before boiling, baking, or feeding it raw to your bearded dragon. The skin and seeds contain a poison known as Rotenone that is sometimes used in insecticides.
It is toxic to human beings and can be especially dangerous to your small bearded friend, especially if he is very young.
Once cooked, only feed the Jicama rot to your pet in small amounts as a snack. You can cut it into small pieces and mix it into a food bowl together with some veggies for a nutritious meal.
Remember to offer this snack in moderation, as too much could upset your dragon’s stomach. You should also introduce it gradually, especially if your bearded dragon has never tried it before.
If you are unsure of how to handle the Jicama, avoid feeding it to your beardie.
Further reading: can bearded dragons eat zucchini squash?
Can bearded dragons eat yellow squash?
Bearded dragons eat Jicama and they should. Jicama is becoming a favorite human and pet food in the United States thanks to its high nutrient content and low fat and sugar levels.
Because it is sweet and filling, it can go down well with picky eaters and can help your beardie maintain a healthy weight, especially considering bearded dragon pets don’t exercise a lot.
If you decide to feed your beardie Jicama, you should be careful when you handle the seeds and skin as they are toxic.
Offer him some grated root pieces as a snack or treat but be careful not to go overboard. It is also important that you only feed your beardie Jicama in moderation, especially at first.
If you are new to owning a beardie as pet then you may want to read our Ultimate Guide To Raising And Caring For a Bearded Dragon.
- Are you supposed to clip a bearded dragon’s nails? - October 21, 2022
- What do you do when you first get a bearded dragon? - October 21, 2022
- What is the best vegetable for bearded dragons? - October 21, 2022