Many of you have asked for our 12-page Ratio "Cheat Sheet" and based on the response, we are very happy that so many of our friends are interested in learning more about this.
So many questions have come up about how to figure the ratios, that we thought a short explanation was in order.
So if we already answered this for you in a PM or email, please pardon the repeat.
First, take out the 12-page cheat sheet (If you want it just email us - see the signature below)
If you look at the list we sent you, consider papaya, for example. Under the "mineral column" you will see that one cup has 33.6 mg. of calcium and 7 mg of Phosphorous. Those numbers are the "absolute" value of those mineral contents. If you divide one into the other, that's where the ratio is derived. As you can see the ratio does not reveal the absolute value, just the relativity between these two minerals. That's why we took the time to add the absolute values for each portion.
Now look at banana. A small banana is about a cup or slightly more so you have to measure it. Anyway, one cup of banana has 7 mg of calcium and 27 mg of phosphrous.
So if you wanted to offer both Papaya and Banana together, you'd want to offer them in the correct proportion to get a 2:1 ratio of Calcium to Phosphorous. Here is a one cup comparison:
1c. Papaya: 33.6 mg. Calcium; 7 mg. Phosphorous
1c. Banana: 7 mg. Calcium; 27 mg. Phosphorous
As you can see, one cup of each side by side does NOT offer a 2:1 ratio but kind of "cancel one another out" - that is a ratio closer to 1:1. So in order to bring the ratio to optimal range (2:1 Ca:Ph) you'd have slightly less than twice as much papaya as banana. That is to say that if you double the amount papaya over banana, that would establish a roughly 2:1 ratio which is what you are shooting for.
If you are concerned they would favor one over the other and therefore not get the correct ratio, you can always blend the fruits and veggies.
In the beginning, you can avoid all these calculations by just sticking to the fruits and veggies that already have a 2:1 ratio or close to it (pineapple, blackberries, oranges and grapes together make about 2:1 in the same portions). But variety is good and Ca:Ph are not the only minerals they should get.
So for more variety, it is good to look at the absolute values as well so you can offer items on opposite ends of the ratio scale.
Be sure to offer a mix of veggies and fruit that provide ample Vitamin A, B2, C, and minerals such as iron and potassium in addition to Calcium and Phosphorus. The good news is it is nearly impossible for a glider to be "oversupplemented" on these natural foods. It's much easier to hurt their liver and other internal organs with supplement powders.
Since we have been paying attention to these values, we have cut back dramatically on supplements. The only one ours get now is HPW powder which is mostly for the D3 content (aids in Calcium absorbtion). Not naming names, but if you study all of the 'diets
' closely, you will see the ratios are off or not even stipulated on some. By educating yourself on these nutritional values, you will do a better job of feeding your little pets a more healthy, natural, and well-rounded diet
. And you will begin to question "why" so many supplements are used and start looking more closely at the ingredients of the foods you consider offering your precious pets.
Now you know why I am against just dumping a lump of frozen mixed veggies in a bowl. That's like "wheel of fortune."
'Hope this helps. If you have questions, let us know.