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Home > Guinea Pigs > Can Guinea Pigs Eat Jicama? Vet-Reviewed Benefits & FAQ

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Jicama? Vet-Reviewed Benefits & FAQ

Can Guinea Pigs Eat Jicama

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Lauren Demos

Veterinarian, DVM

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Jicama is an interesting Mexican root vegetable with thick brown skin. It has the consistency and color of the inside of a potato or apple. And we’d like to tell you that the sweetness falls somewhere in between. But realistically, you probably already know what a jicama is because you’re ready to serve it up to your Guinea Pig!

The flesh of jicama is completely safe for Guinea Pigs, but there are certain factors to take into consideration here. There’s a time and a place for everything, so make sure you’re portioning the jicama correctly so your Guinea Pig can reap the best benefits.


Guinea Pigs Can Have Jicama in Moderation

You have to be very careful with the jicama plant. If you feed this root vegetable to your Guinea Pigs at all, you need to make sure that you completely remove the skin, stems, and leaves. Only the fleshy parts of this veggie are safe to eat.

As long as you’re careful and prepare jicama appropriately, your little Guinea Pig can certainly enjoy it in small amounts.

guinea pig
Image Credit: Piqsels

Jicama Nutrition Facts

Amount Per: 1 medium

  • Calories: 250
  • Total Fat: 0.65 g
  • Sodium: 26 mg
  • Potassium: 989 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate: 58 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 32 g
  • Sugar 12 g
  • Protein: 4.7 g
  • Vitamin: 221%
  • Iron: 22%
  • Vitamin B6: 15%
  • Magnesium: 19%
  • Calcium: 7%
sliced jicama
Image Credit: Nungning20, Shutterstock


Benefits of Jicama for Guinea Pigs

Jicama can have lots of nutritional benefits for Guinea Pigs. They will love munching on its crunchy texture, and they will enjoy the sweetness, too! Here are some major health benefits you can expect.

1. Prebiotics

Prebiotics are generally found in fiber-dense foods, such as jicama. Prebiotics help restore the balance of the gut, aiding a healthy gut and proper digestion.

2. Vitamin C

Vitamin C certainly works in your favor here. If you have a Guinea Pig, you already know that their bodies can’t produce vitamin C independently, so they receive 100% from their diet. Jicama has a decent vitamin C content that can boost your Guinea Pig’s intake.

3. Fiber

Fiber is crucial! In addition to their Timothy hay, Guinea Pigs also need plenty of raw veggies and fruits that provide a source of fiber to help with digestion. Jicama is full of it.

guinea pig eating hays
Image Credit: Alexas_Fotos, Pixabay

4. Potassium

Potassium is a critical element of your Guinea Pig’s diet. It helps their bodies maintain normal fluid levels inside their cells. It needs its counterpart, sodium, to do its job correctly. Jicama is absolutely stuffed with potassium.

5. Calcium

Your Guinea Pig requires calcium in their diet to help muscles expand and contract. It also plays a vital role in helping the nerves carry messages between the brain and body.

6. Magnesium

Magnesium is an essential nutrient that regulates muscle and nerve function. It also regulates blood sugar and makes protein, bone, and DNA.


Downfalls of Jicama for Guinea Pigs

While jicama certainly has its upsides, it can have its share of downfalls. Here they are.


Your Guinea Pig may enjoy the taste of sugar, but it’s certainly not healthy for them to eat frequently. Sugar can lead to all sorts of issues like obesity and diabetes—but that’s not all. It can also throw off their gut flora and cause serious gastrointestinal issues.

guinea pig side view
Image Credit: Katya36, Pixabay

Potential Toxins

The flesh of a jicama veggie is super nutritious. However, all other parts are toxic, as we mentioned earlier. It contains a chemical compound called rotenone. Rotenone happens naturally in some plants, such as the jicama and many other plants in the family Fabaceae.


How to Feed Your Guinea Pig Jicama

If you choose to feed your Guinea Pig jicama, prepare it correctly. First, ensure it is raw, as cooked jicama depletes certain valuable nutrients.

  • Make sure all outer layers are removed before ever serving.
  • Wash the flesh thoroughly.
  • Cut the jicama into bite-sized pieces.
  • Give your guinea pig a few, along with other raw goodies.
sliced jicama
Image By: Pixabay


Final Thoughts: Guinea Pigs + Jicama

So, now you know that jicama can absolutely have some health benefits if you give it to your Guinea Pig sparingly. However, the outer parts of this root veggie are very toxic to them—so it might not be worth it for some owners to risk.

Jicama is full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals that nourish the body. So, if you choose to offer this root veggie, wash, peel, and properly portion the pieces to meet the nutritional needs of your pal.

Featured Image Credit: Ina Probo, Shutterstock

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