Antioxidants Are Cheap Insurance

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A study at the veterinary school of the University of Liege, Belgium, confirmed what we’ve believed for years: antioxidants help with lung inflammation.

Horses with heaves were divided into control and treatment groups. Supplementation was an antioxidant containing vitamin E, vitamin C and selenium from natural sources for four weeks. Supplementation led to a significant improvement in exercise tolerance, a drop in inflammatory scores and improved indices of antioxidant status in lung fluid.

Antioxidant nutrients are your horse’s defenders and peacekeepers. They protect against potentially damaging byproducts of everyday energy generation in cells, aging, and assaults from chemicals and drugs. They support and control immune-system reactions in defense against disease and inflammation.

Important antioxidants include:
• Vitamins E and C
• Omega-3 Fatty Acids
• Carnitine
• Lipoic Acid
• N-acetylcysteine.

Several minerals are important as well and often deficient in the diet:
• Copper
• Zinc
• Selenium
• Magnesium.

The antioxidant status of many horses is borderline at best. Exercise, disease, infections, injuries, drugs, and aging all increase antioxidant the requirements.

Fresh, unprocessed grains and grass are rich in antioxidants. But even whole grains lose their antioxidant content quickly, and few horses are have grass all year round.

Your best bet is to feed your horse a balanced diet that at least meets National Research Council recommendations and add a good antioxidant-rich supplement.

Also With This Article
Click here to view ”Antioxidant Targets.”