This post may contain affiliate links. We are compensated for referring customers to our affiliate partners.
The Indigo Moon All Life Stages is a dry cat food formula that is rich in protein and low on carbohydrates. The cat formula is made with high quality ingredients that ensure your cat gets all the nutrition it requires to remain healthy.
The manufacturers of this cat formula, the solid gold company, claim that the cat formula contains all the ingredients that are needed by your cat. They go ahead to say that the formula is suitable for all cats. However, it is a well known fact that manufacturers hype their products just to get customers.
Is the Solid Gold Indigo Moon All Life Stages all that its cranked up to be? Find out below.
Ingredients in indigo moon all iife stages
Chicken Meal, Potatoes, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Chicken, Pea Protein, Ocean Fish Meal, Natural Flavor, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Salmon Oil (source of DHA), Potassium Chloride, Dried Chicory Root, dl-methionine, Parsley Flakes, Almond Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Pumpkin Meal, Sesame Oil (preserved by mixed tocopherols), Thyme, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Blueberries, Carrots, Cranberries, Broccoli, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Calcium Panthothenate, Copper Sulfate, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Zinc Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Manganese Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Cobalt Carbonate, Calcium Iodate, Folic Acid, Biotin, Sodium Selenite, Rosemary Extract, Vitamin B12 Supplement.
A review of the first five ingredients
Chicken meal is ground up chicken meat that has been carefully dried to a moisture level of 10%. The protein content is 65% and the fat level is 12%. Many pet owners feel that chicken is a superior ingredient to chicken meal. It would seem logical that feeding a pet a whole, non-rendered chicken would be good. However, whole chicken still contains its moisture content prior to cooking and since whole chicken consists of about 80% moisture, after the cooking process is over there isn’t much left. With chicken meal, the moisture was removed prior to cooking. That means, chicken meal actually has a much higher protein percentage and provides far more beneficial nutrients to your cats than whole chicken. Meals consist of meat and skin, with or without the bones, but exclusive of feathers/hair, heads, feet, horns, entrails etc. and have the proper calcium/phosphorus ratio required for a balanced diet. It’s also important to note the quality difference between “chicken by-product meal” and “chicken meal.” While we do take exception to chicken by-products, chicken meal is actually a very high quality and nutritious ingredient. We are happy to see this listed.
Potatoes provide a lot of carbs and unfortunately, cats do not digest carbs well and it can also lead to weight gain. This ingredient is becoming more popular in “grain-free” cat foods because while potatoes are not grains, they serve much the same purpose by acting as a non-nutritious filler. The good news is potatoes are complex carbs. These complex carbs are easier to digest than whole grains and also don’t spike blood sugar levels like the simple carbs do. But, anyway you cut it… carbs are carbs and cats don’t need them. This is a rather non-nutritious ingredient.
Canola oil comes from the seeds of the canola plant. Once harvested, canola seeds are crushed and the oil contained within the seed is extracted. The average canola seed is 45% oil. Some cat owners like this ingredient because of its favorable omega-3 and omega-6 content. Others claim it can cause nervous system damage, respiratory problems, anemia, constipation and blindness in both humans and animals. In smaller quantities, this ingredient is unlikely to cause health problems for your cat, but since cats are obligate carnivores it is important that the food also contains enough meat based fat.
Chicken is a very popular ingredient for pet food and in this case, they are referring to whole chicken. This is a very high quality meat source and we are pleased to see it listed. However, whole chicken loses about 80% of its content during the cooking process since the majority of whole chicken is water. After the cooking process is complete, the amount of whole chicken remaining is substantially reduced. Therefor, while whole chicken is a great source of meat protein, this ingredient alone is not enough to provide sufficient levels of meat protein in a cats diet.
As grain-free cat food becomes more popular, so does the inclusion of peas and pea fiber. That’s because peas can be used as a filler ingredient in similar ways grains are used, but they can still label the food as grain-free. Unfortunately, the full effect on a cats health from pea fiber is largely unknown. There have been some studies shown to suggest pea fiber can cause many dogs to have a runny stool, there is very little research that has been done on how cats are able to digest this ingredient. Overall, it probably will not harm your cat but it will not add much nutritional value to your cats diet, either.
Other ingredients of interest
Taurine – Taurine is an essential amino acid that is critical for normal heart muscle function, vision, and reproduction in cats. Since cats are unable to create proper levels of taurine in their body naturally, it must be supplemented in their food. That’s why you’ll see this ingredient listed for so many different cat food blends. For cat foods that contain enough high quality animal based proteins, a taurine supplement may not be needed. However, most cat foods will need to add in additional taurine in the form of a supplement to the food. Even when included as a supplement instead, there is very low to almost zero health risk associated with this ingredient. In fact, a lack of taurine can cause a slew of issues, so it’s very important to make sure your cat is receiving enough taurine in his or her diet.
Natural flavor – The term “natural flavor” is extremely vague and can mean just about anything. In human foods, natural flavor is usually MSG or some similar flavor enhancer. When pet food companies are asked what is in their “natural flavor ingredients, they usually refuse to answer. There are a lot of things in the world considered “natural” and they almost all have a flavor. Such generic terms can be indicative of poor quality ingredients. While that’s not always the case, the fact is, we don’t really know what this ingredient consists of and that is worrying.
Ocean fish meal – While some ocean fish may be naturally caught fish, generally this indicates farmed fish. When ocean fish are farmed, it includes the practice of growing finfish in huge, often over crowded cages out in open ocean waters. When fish are farmed, usually the higher quality fish goes to the human food industry while the fish unsuitable for human consumption is used in the pet food industry. There is some debate about how beneficial seafood is in a cats diet, including fish, but in general it is considered a safe ingredient with a high amount of protein and an excellent source of essential fatty acids like omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Since this is a fish “meal” that means most of the moisture was removed prior to the cooking process. That means this will provide much higher nutrient values than “whole” ingredients.
Broccoli – This is a very rich source of vitamin C, soluble fiber, calcium as well as other nutrients. While not dangerous to your cat, it has been associated with an increase in flatulence in many cats.
Does this formula cause allergies?
Indigo Moon All Life Stages cat formula does not contain any ingredient that is known to cause allergies or poisoning in cats. You can, therefore, feed your cat on this formula without having to worry about your cat suffering from allergies or from poisoning.
Ingredients to avoid feeding your cat on
Soy and corn – Both of these grains are commonly found in cheaper cat foods you can normally find in the grocery store. They are cheap filler ingredients that will help to make your cat feel more full, but corn and soy provide almost no nutritional value to cats. These ingredients can also be difficult for some cats to digest, so we do not recommend this product for cats with sensitive digestion issues. And finally, these are two of the most widely known allergens for cats. Most cats are not allergic to these ingredients, but many are. Cat food companies like to use these ingredients because they are cheap and boost the protein percentage in the food. However, cats digest meat proteins and plant based proteins differently. Since they are obligate carnivores, they require meat protein to live a healthy life and do not process plant proteins very well.
BHA/BHT – Both BHA & BHT are preservatives that have been banned in human foods in many countries due to cancer risks. However, they remain approved for use in pet foods. A growing number of pet owners are becoming aware of the potential dangers these ingredients bring and are shunning all foods containing BHA and BHT. A quick internet search on these preservatives will show that the backlash is gaining steam with many cat food companies abandoning these ingredients. BHA and BHT are extremely controversial ingredients in all forms of pet food.
Wheat – Most cat food brands that use wheat in their products will tell you that wheat is a grain used as a high-quality carbohydrate source in dry dog and cat foods and biscuits. They will tell you that it provides energy for daily activity, as well as processing characteristics for the food. And finally, they will tell you that the allergy risk associated with wheat is low. However, many experts not associated with the pet food industry will seemingly say the opposite. From them, you’ll hear that wheat and wheat by-product is a very common allergy for dogs and cats. You’ll even find sources that claim wheat has also been linked to epileptic seizures and celiac diseases. Cats are not able to digest grains nearly as well as humans or dogs, so many cats may also experience digestion issues if given too much wheat. In general, wheat is considered to be a very low priced filler ingredient with essentially no nutritional value for cats. As the debate rages on, you be the judge.
Animal by products – One of the worst meat ingredients found in pet food today is animal by product. It’s true that this ingredient provides a very high amount of meat protein that cats need to thrive. However, animal by products are considered to be the lowest form of meat and it isn’t even approved for human consumption. Animal by-products are carcasses and parts of carcasses from slaughterhouses, animal shelters, zoos and veterinarians, and products of animal origin not intended for human consumption, including catering waste. Legally, this ingredient can even contain roadkill or euthanized animals. This ingredient may also contain what is called “4D meat” which is what the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) calls cattle that is dead, dying, disabled or diseased. This meat is considered unfit for human consumption, but is typically found in many pet food products. This is not something we recommend you feed your cat or any other pet.
The ingredients in this formula are well balanced and nutritious. This is an above average cat formula. The only down side is the limited amounts of animal protein. Cats are obligate carnivores and thus require sufficient animal protein in their diet.