Supplementing the Equine Diet with Essential Fatty Acids
Although feeding fat to horses has often been a topic of heavy debate, current research indicates that supplementing essential fatty acids in horses’ diets is not only useful, but might very well be a requirement. In fact, researchers have shown that feeding essential fatty acids (EFAs) for health-promoting benefits can be justified for not only maintaining skin and hoof health, but also mental, digestive, reproductive, pulmonary and joint health.
Jack Grogan, CN, and chief science officer for Uckele Health & Nutrition, has formulated nutritional supplements to support healthy metabolic balance in horses. Grogan explains that an added benefit of supplementing fat is that it generates less internal heat while being digested than protein or carbohydrates, keeping your horse cooler.
"Other benefits of higher fat diets can include enabling your horse to perform longer without fatigue, lowering the risk of injury, improving the ability to maintain body weight with less grain, and reducing the risk of colic and founder," he adds.
Grogan goes on to explain that horses with higher energy requirements, such as pregnant or lactating mares, growing horses, performance horses and horses recovering from accidents, injury, or surgery, can benefit from EFAs. "In addition, EFAs can allow lactating mares to breed again more quickly, enable horses to more efficiently and safely meet their energy requirements, improve coat condition, and reduce dehydration risk because a byproduct of fat metabolism is
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