Fish food supplements – are they necessary? Well, yeah. Fish, like humans, require a nutritional boost in their diet that their food may lack!
Fish food comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, including flakes, pellets, and frozen. Each has advantages and disadvantages depending on the type of fish you have. However, it is likely that the fish food you have is deficient in essential vitamins and minerals.
This is especially true for flakes and pellets. Important nutrients are lost during the manufacturing process of these fish foods.
This is where fish food supplements come in. Adding supplements to your pellets can improve your fish’s health, growth, color, and overall quality of life!
In this article, we’ll give you an updated list of a few must-have supplements that we, at KaveMan Aquatics, use for our freshwater fish.
Fish Food Supplements
Seachem Nourish is the first fish food supplement we recommend. We used Seachem Vitality in our previous supplement article. Despite the fact that Vitality was designed for marine tanks, it contains a vital vitamin for all fish species – vitamin C.
Fish’s immune systems, like humans’, are strengthened by vitamin C. It is necessary for disease prevention, healing, digestion, and skeletal formation. By far the most important vitamin for your fish is vitamin C.
After some research and discussion with Seachem, we decided to replace Vitality with Nourish. So, what exactly is Nourish?
Nourish is a vitamin, amino acid, and trace element supplement designed specifically for freshwater fish. Potassium iodide is present in this fish food supplement. Iodine is required for the biosynthesis of thyroid hormones thyroxine and triiodothyronine.
Great news! Nourish contains vitamin C as well! Nourish is a better supplement for our freshwater fish because it contains iodine and vitamin C.
Nourish was designed for freshwater fish, but it can also be used on marine ornamental fish.
Next up, Vita Chem from Boyd Enterprises! A multi-vitamin fish food supplement for fish. Use Vita Chem to supplement the vitamins and amino acids that may be lacking in commercial flakes and pellets.
The additional nutrition will benefit your fish’s overall health. The amino acids are essential for the energy, growth, and metabolism of your fish.
Seachem Zooplankton is a marine fish food supplement, but it can also be used for freshwater fish! Zooplankton is specifically designed for coral growth, health, and color. So, why do we use this for our freshwater pals?
Zooplankton stimulates natural melanin production. Melanin is responsible for your fish’s vibrancy and coloration. Here’s a great video of my African Cichlids displaying their vibrant colors.
Seachem Garlic Guard
Seachem Garlic Guard is the final (and most important) fish food supplement. This is a concentrated garlic supplement that stimulates the appetites of fish. Garlic has a pleasant odor and flavor that attracts even the most finicky of eaters.
Not only can garlic help with feeding, but the component allicin found in garlic has a significant impact on the health of your fish. Allicin has been linked to immune system stimulation, growth, and the maintenance of healthy gut microbiomes.
If you could only take one of these supplements, we recommend starting with Garlic Guard. So, what about vitamin C? Allicin also has strong anti-oxidant properties similar to vitamin C.
Mixing Fish Food Supplements
Fill a small container with pellets. Then, add the recommended dosage of each of the fish food supplements. Allow the mixture to sit for 15 – 20 minutes after stirring.
All of the liquid supplements will be absorbed by the dry fish food. When the time has passed, make sure that all liquids have been absorbed into the dry food.
When there are no liquids left, you know that the food is nutrient-dense and it is time to feed your fish friends!
It takes time and effort to mix your fish food supplements every time you need to feed your fish. We’ll do anything for our fish friends, but there will be times when you don’t feel like adding supplements and waiting.
You can “meal prep” your fish’s food to save time and effort.
Make the mixture as directed, but only enough to last you about 2 – 3 days. Refrigerate these mixtures to keep them fresh.
We don’t recommend making a batch that will last you a week because the nutrient content of your mixture will deplete over time (even if the mixtures are refrigerated).
You’re adding these supplements to your fish’s food in the first place to improve their nutrition; you don’t want to lose that!
We understand if “meal prep” isn’t your thing or if life gets in the way. So, at the very least, feed this mixture to your fish 3 – 4 times per week. Maybe at least 2 times a week. Find out what works best for you and your fish!
As fishkeepers, we only want our fish to live happy and healthy lives – to thrive! Without the proper nutrition, fish can suffer from stunted growth or a weakened immune system.