Equine Supplements (continued)
The performance and general health of a horse is directly related to a solid nutrition programme. Horses require a different level of nutrition based upon factors including age, activity levels and discipline. Trace Minerals including zinc, copper and manganese are essential for horse health, growth and performance.
Vitamins are organic compounds that are, in many respects, similar to the trace elements. Both are needed in minute quantities (milligrams) in the diet, they have a wide range of functions in the body, and they are essential for normal metabolism in the animal.
Vitamins are classified as either fat-soluble or water-soluble based on how these are stored within the body. The major fat-soluble vitamins include vitamins A, D, and E. These are important for vision, calcium absorption and regulation, and as a primary antioxidant within the body protecting cells and muscle function. Fat-soluble vitamins are stored within the fat deposits of the body and can accumulate giving the potential of toxicity if overfed. The other classification of vitamins is water-soluble, which are often referred to as B-vitamins. They include thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, biotin, and folic acid. These vitamins function in nearly every chemical reaction within the body; therefore, they are critical in metabolism, growth, and energy generation.