PetFoodIndustry.com reports that high levels of phosphorous in cat food may be a contributing factor to kidney damage.
Ellen Kienzle, a veterinary science professor at Ludwig-Maximillian University, issued a warning that many cat food formulations may contribute to kidney damage in cats due to an excess of phosphorous. While phosphorous is an essential nutrient for humans and cats alike and is required for the healthy functioning of cats’ bodies, excessive quantities are known to be toxic to kidneys. According to Kienzle, some pet food formulations have been shown to contain over five times the amount of phosphorous recommended by nutritional guidelines when tested in a laboratory setting.
“We do not yet know the whole story, but we do know that phosphorus excess can be nephrotoxic. Sources of phosphorus and the calcium to phosphorus ratio appear to be important.”
— Ellen Kienzle, Professor of Veterinary Science, Ludwig-Maximillian University
Though supported by recent scientific findings, the warning seems to challenge established guidelines regarding phosphorous quantities classified as generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other regulatory agencies.
More work is needed to understand the effects of phosphorous on cats’ kidneys, but the preliminary data suggests manufacturers may need to reexamine cat food formulations.
To read more about Kienzle’s findings and their potential effects on the pet food industry, read the full story on PetFoodIndustry.com.