Sweet potatoes are loaded with vitamin A and contain energy-giving carbohydrates, vitamin C, folate, calcium, dietary fiber and potassium. Serve them to your pet bird cooked or raw. (Peel or scrub thoroughly first.) Introduce young birds to mashed sweet potatoes so they’ll enjoy them all their lives! Even canaries love sweet potatoes. Discard sweet potatoes that have become moldy in the pantry, because cooking may not kill the spores.
Sweet potatoes and yams are actually two different vegetables. Both are tubers, but the sweet potato is native to South America, and the yam hails from Africa. The important difference is that, according to USDA reports, only the true sweet potato contains Vitamin A.
Pumpkin is also a good source of vitamin A. Birds will enjoy the seeds, fresh or roasted, as well as the cooked pumpkin itself.
Brussels sprouts contain vitamin E, vitamin B6, vitamin C and folic acid. Feed them to your bird cooked or raw.
Cauliflower is a source of biotin and pantothenic acid.
Carrots are highly nutritious and readily available year-round. Cut them into sticks or chunks; offer them raw or cooked, and include the tops: small birds love bathing in the wet greens.
Cook hard beans (kidney, navy, black, etc.), potatoes, beets and white potatoes prior to offering them to your pet bird. Boil corn on the cob briefly to reduce the risk of mold. Many birds enjoy cooked butternut or acorn squash and pumpkin. Cut these vitamin-A-rich vegetables into chunks, or serve them mashed, like potatoes.
It isn’t necessary to cook most vegetables, such as broccoli, peas, string beans, peppers, well-scrubbed sweet potatoes or leafy greens, but if your bird refuses raw produce, try cooking it. Add a few hot pepper flakes for flavor if you wish.
“Sweet potato shows trypsin inhibitor activity. That means it contains an enzyme inhibitor that blocks the action of trypsin, an enzyme that digests proteins. The trypsin inhibitor prevents the digestion of protein. Sweet potatoes with higher protein levels have more of the trypsin inhibitor. This makes raw sweet potato difficult to digest. The trypsin inhibitor is deactivated by cooking.
One way the raw food diet helps people is by supplying food enzymes. Food enzymes do part of the work of digesting the raw food. Enzyme inhibitors increase the amount of work that your body needs to do to digest foods. Enzyme inhibitors force your body to produce more digestive enzymes. This uses up resources that could be used to produce detoxifying enzymes. When animals are regularly fed enzyme inhibitors in research, they become sick. Sweet potato should not be eaten raw”
In order to get the optimal amount of Vit A from sweet potatoes, or carrots that they need to be at least slightly cooked or steamed.