Vitamin E for Horses
Today we’re talking about vitamin E and horses. Believe it or not, vitamin E is incredibly important to your equine friend. Vitamin E is an essential nutrient that can’t be created by horses themselves, meaning they need to acquire it through proper diet.
Horses can get their vitamin E in a variety of ways, but the best way is to give them quality pasture to feed on. If you feed your horse low-quality forage, they probably aren’t getting enough vitamin E. And if your horse doesn’t have the recommended levels of vitamin E in its system, it becomes at risk for developing all kinds of nasty neuromuscular conditions.
If you’re wondering why vitamin E is important, it’s because vitamin E plays a critical role in the neuromuscular health of your horse. In nature, horses get all the vitamin E they need through feeding in a lush green pasture. But because this is not always possible with horses in captivity, you must ensure your horse gets its vitamin E through proper supplementations.
Vitamin E and Selenium for Horses
We now know that vitamin E is critical for the neuromuscular health of your horse, but something you might not have heard of is selenium. Selenium is a mineral equally as important as vitamin E. It plays a number of roles in the body of your horse, and one of the most important roles it has is that of an antioxidant.
Selenium is also critical for wound healing, for stress tolerance, for fetal development, for a healthy coat of hair, and to detoxify drugs and chemicals. It’s important that your horse has enough vitamin E and selenium in its system to heal wounds, to keep its muscles functioning properly, and to prevent any kind of infection.
The issue in the United States is that most of the soil is deficient in selenium. This is why you absolutely must supplement your horse’s diet with something rich in vitamin E and selenium. Even if your horse is feeding frequently in a green pasture, it’s still recommended that you provide some kind of supplement all year that boosts levels of vitamin E and selenium.
What Does Vitamin E Do for Horses?
Vitamin E does a lot for horses. It’s actually one of two important vitamins which horses are unable to produce on their own and must be provided through diet. Vitamin E plays a critical role in immune response, nerve and muscle function, and antioxidant actions. Not only is vitamin E critical to the health of a young horse, but it’s important in growing horses too.
Vitamin E works to maintain adequate muscle functions, to aid in the prevention of a long list of muscular diseases, and to offer antioxidant protection to different body tissues, particularly with cell membranes and enzymes. Without vitamin E, your horse risks serious damage from oxidation. Your horse may also suffer from muscular dystrophy and a poor immunity to diseases if it does not have enough vitamin E in its diet.
How Much Vitamin E Should a Horse Have?
As a fat-soluble vitamin, vitamin E plays a critical role in the health of your horse. But how much vitamin E is your horse supposed to consume on a daily basis? The National Research Council recommends that every horse consumes between 1 and 2 IU of vitamin E per kilogram of their total body weight every day. On average, this equals between 1,000 and 2,000 IU for a standard 500-kg (1,100-lbs) horse every day.
Just keep in mind that if your horse has access to quality pasture, it’s not going to need a lot of vitamin E in a supplement form. If your horse is eating properly outside of supplements, a daily dosage of 500 IU is more than enough.
Can a Horse Have Too Much Vitamin E?
You can certainly give a horse too much vitamin E, but it’s not going to be easy. It’s like overdosing on vitamin C tablets. Studies have shown that excessive levels of vitamin E inside of a horse’s system can result in a decrease of the levels of beta carotene in the horse’s body. Beta carotene is the primary building block for vitamin A, and so if your horse is juiced up on vitamin E, it could actually be missing some much-needed vitamin A.
Of course, for this to happen you would need to feed your horse 10,000 IU of vitamin E daily over a prolonged period of time, and this isn’t something that generally gets done by accident.
What is the Best Vitamin E Supplement for Horses?
One of the best vitamin E supplements available for horses is the Horse Health Vitamin & Selenium Crumbles for Horses. This stuff is simply fantastic. It’s wildly affordable, it comes in a bucket that will last for either 96 days or 640 days, and it combines the best of everything to give your horse the nutrients it requires.
This formula uses vitamin E and selenium to optimize the health of your horse’s muscles. It’s appropriate for horses who are active workers. It provides approx. 625 IU of vitamin E with 1 mg of selenium per each half ounce, which is great for the recommended daily intake. The formula also comes in easy-to-feed crumbles that your horse will absolutely adore. Not to mention, this supplement provides antioxidant support to help fight against oxidative stress.
If you’re in the market for the best vitamin E horse supplement, look no further. Your horse will thank you for the healthy snack, and you will be happy seeing your horse in the best shape of its life. Most supplements are a huge combination of many different minerals and nutrients – but we love this supplement because it is strictly designed to provide adequate vitamin E and selenium!