Can Tortoises Eat Cherries?

Can Tortoises Eat Cherries?

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Cherries are edible fruit with a sour-sweet, juicy flavor. They come in a variety of colors, from bright, vivid red to purple. In addition to offering numerous health advantages and serving as an excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory for tortoises, cherries are high in proteins, fiber, calcium, potassium, and vitamin C.

However, because of the large amounts of sugar present in them (18 grams in one cup), non-fruit-eating species of tortoises should not be fed cherries due to the danger of intestinal issues. In this article, we'll find out if tortoises can eat cherries or not. 

Can Tortoises Eat Cherries?

Yes, tortoises can eat cherries. Tortoises can eat cherry tomatoes as long as they are ripe. Cherries have high levels of vitamin A, exceeding the recommended daily intake of 86%, as well as calcium, sodium, and iron. Tortoises also love them because they are sweet and juicy.

However, not all species of tortoises are fruit eaters, so be sure to confirm your tortoise is one. Non-fruit-eating species are not equipped to deal with the sugars in cherries and can suffer intestinal problems if they eat them. Cherries also contain malic acid, therefore, should only be offered as occasional treats and a small part of their diet.


Impressive Health Benefits Of Cherries For Tortoises

Cherries are one of the most beloved fruits and for good reason. They’re not only delicious but also pack vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds with powerful health effects. Here are 3  impressive health benefits of cherries.

Cherries are packed with nutrients

Cherries are little stone fruits with a wide range of flavors and colors, from bright red to yellow to blackish red. There are two main categories: sweet cherries and sour-sweet cherries. All varieties are incredibly healthy, loaded with fiber, vitamins, and minerals that are good for tortoises. Sweet, uncooked, cherries in a cup (154 grams) supply:

  • 97 grams of calories
  • Protein: 2 grams of Protein
  • 25 grams of Carbohydrates
  • 3 grams of Fiber
  • Vitamin C: 18% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Potassium: 10% of the DV
  • Copper: 5% of the DV
  • Manganese: 5% of the DV

These nutrients, especially fiber, vitamin C, and potassium, have numerous positive effects on the health of the tortoises. 

  • Vitamin C: In one cup or 154 grams of cherries, the vitamin C content is 18% of the Daily Value. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps support the immune system and skin health of your tortoise. It is also known as ascorbic acid and it plays an important role in tissue health and the absorption of iron from food in tortoises.
  • Potassium: Potassium is needed for muscle contraction, nerve function, blood pressure regulation, and many other critical bodily processes.
  • Protein: Cherries contain a high amount of protein. About 2 grams of protein is present in every cup or 154 grams of cherries. Protein aids the tortoise's ability to maintain a healthy metabolic rate and repair damaged tissues.
  • Fiber: Cherries also contain a good amount of fiber but not as much, compared to grass hays which have very high fiber content. The presence of fiber in a tortoise's food helps with digestion and maintains the health of its digestive tract. It helps keep their digestive system healthy by fueling beneficial gut bacteria and promoting bowel regularity. 

Cherries are rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds

Cherries may offer a variety of health advantages due to their high plant component content. All cherries contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory substances, though the type and quantity can differ depending on the variety. This high antioxidant concentration may aid in preventing oxidative stress, which is connected to several chronic diseases and early aging in both humans and tortoises. 

In particular, cherries are rich in polyphenols, a wide class of plant chemicals that protect against cellular deterioration, lessen inflammation, and enhance overall health in tortoises. In tortoises, polyphenols help control blood pressure and maintain the flexibility and health of their blood vessels, which helps with circulation.

According to a recent study, diets high in polyphenols may offer protection against several chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers in tortoises. In addition, cherries contain carotenoid pigments like beta-carotene and vitamin C, as was previously mentioned, both of which have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities.

Cherries may benefit heart health in tortoises

Cherries may benefit heart health because they are high in nutrients and compounds that have been shown in tortoises and even humans to promote overall heart health. These nutrients and compounds include potassium and polyphenol antioxidants. It is estimated that 1 cup or 154 grams of cherries contain about 10% of the daily value of potassium, a mineral necessary for the health of your pet tortoise's heart. 

Can Tortoises Eat Cherry Leaves?

Tortoises should not be fed cherry leaves. It is best not to feed cherry leaves to your tortoise because the leaves and twigs contain cyanide traces. Cyanide is a poisonous substance that can harm your tortoises. If your pet tortoise mistakenly consumes some cherry leaves, keep an eye on his behavior and bowel movements for a day or two. If you notice anything suspicious during the course, immediately inform the vet. 


How Many Cherries Should You Give Your Pet Tortoises?

Tortoises should only have cherries in moderation. One or two cherries can be provided once a month as a snack or as part of the tortoises' diet. It is advisable to feed your tortoises in moderation, even though giving them more cherries than advised would not cause any problems.

Final Thoughts

You can supplement your tortoise's diet with cherry tomatoes, a nutritious and healthy fruit. When purchasing cherries for your tortoises, make sure they are organic. In addition to being delicious, cherries are also quite healthy. They are abundant in necessary vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and plant compounds. As a result, they are well known for helping tortoises with digestion, immunity, and heart health. Cherries should only be provided as a rare treat and a little portion of their diet, though, because they contain malic acid. 

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