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Sustainable plant medicine for competition horses
Sustainable plant medicine for competition horses

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34% increase in the numbers of horse trainers and owners using natural medicine to replace omeprazole, gastrogard and ulcergard. 
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6 reasons why horses get ulcers, more people are turning to natural treatment alternatives, cheaper, safer and more effective than long term drug use. 
It is estimated that between 60 and 90% of horses are affected by gastric lesions including the colon (hind gut ulcers) and it is thought that the majority of ulcers are due to modern management methods of travelling, training, feeding and stabling. Any horse that is without food for more than four hours will have a low ph. in the stomach (greater acidity) which is damaging to the walls of the top (non- glandular) portion of the stomach, whilst horses  with a constant supply of feed have a much higher (better) ph. and less chance of suffering from EGUS. Feedstuffs vary in  pH balance, coarser materials form a mat in the upper portion of the stomach and mix with saliva to keep the pH in that region around 6 to 7 more alkaline. Medium-density feedstuffs are located in the middle zone of the stomach, and this area has a pH of 4 to 5. High density fluids are in the lower portion of the stomach and the pH is more acid at 1 to 2. The lower portion of the stomach is protected from acid production by a mucous coating. The upper non-glandular portion of the stomach is not intended to be exposed to stomach acid. Hydrochloric acid is secreted continually by the gastric glands which are located in the lower portion of the stomach.
The discovery of this layering effect helps explain why exercise tends to increase the frequency of gastric ulcer formation in horses. Monitors implanted in working horses revealed the contractions of abdominal muscles forced the lower pH liquids from the lower portions of the stomach up through the coarser feedstuff layers, exposing the non-glandular portion to the corrosive acids. Even abdominal muscle contraction secondary to anxiety caused the same reaction.
Acid secretion is up or down and is regulated by food intake. The stomach acts as its own pH meter and is stimulated by histamine which releases HCL by the parietal cells. Blocking the H2 (histamine 2) receptors suppresses gastric acid production. Within the pyloric gland mucosa, unique cell types which are located very close to each other constantly "test" the pH of the stomach and react in such a way as to keep the pH in the correct range.
The type of food fed also has an effect, for instance feeding alfalfa and oat straw significantly raises the ph. level, whilst feeding high grain diets produces volatile fatty acids and lactic acid, both easily damage the upper portion of the stomach causing pain and inflammation.
Many veterinarians quote stress as being a significant factor to the cause of ulcers, which would include travelling, confinement in a box for long periods and illness (laminitis, lameness, infections) all these events cause the body to release stress hormones and chemicals which ultimately lower the ph. of the stomach and damage the lining of the stomach.
Another major cause of ulcers in horses is the use of NSAID’s given as pain relievers and anti-arthritics, the most commonly prescribed one being bute.  NSAID’s prevent the production of prostaglandin, which is a key ingredient in the protection of the stomach. Long term use of any NSAID’s in the horse is considered to be detrimental to gut and liver health but balance is the key and if a horse is so lame it is unable to walk around the box then most owners would agree that the primary concern is to make it comfortable as quickly as possible and consider ulcer medication alongside. Nsaids are also thought to be responsible for ulcers in the hind gut Bacterial Infections
More recent research has been directed at the relationship between the presence of ulcers and bacterial infections. Until the mid-1980s, it was felt that stress, NSAID’s poor eating habits or all of these factors working together led to the development of gastritis and ulcers. Since that time, evidence has been mounting that Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) has a major role in causing these diseases The most recent research has indicated that the most common cause of ulcers and cancer in humans is infection with helicobacter pylori.
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Equine Joint Supplements are often based on Glucosamine Sulphate, which is thought to help rebuild the cartilage in  joints. Though for competing horses this may not be enough.
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Equine Joint Supplements.
There is a current trend for feeding daily joint supplements containing glucosamine, chondroitin and MSM that are beneficial to joint health

Especially those in competition horses involved in high level activities. Many horses receive them daily along with HA but according to the American Veterinary Journal this popular combination may not be sufficient to prevent joint degradation and pain in dressage and jumping horses and those involved in intense exercise and training such as race horses and endurance horses. With 20 years experience in the science and mechanisms of pain, injury and repair on some of the world’s best sports horses it is my strong opinion that the competition horse should be given a much more comprehensive regime of support to maintain suppleness and achieve  high performance. An effective supplement for an elite sport horse to benefit joints and the surrounding structures such as tendons, musculotendinous junctions should contain the following...read more at  
 
 
                                           
 
 
 
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Sportmax for horses (not Phenylbutazone)
Devils Claw is now banned under FEI rules starting from Jan 2016 what are the safe and effective alternatives that do not contain similar banned substances. Used by professionals in all equine sports.
SportMax-Soundness
SportMax-Soundness
superfix.net
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Gastro-G - Equine Gastric Ulcers can be treated with a new and natural supplement added to the diet this will both prevent the ulcers developing and treat the symptoms. 
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Gastro-G a new 100% natural treatment for Equine Gastric Ulcers, a natural alternative for omeprazole, ranitidine, cimetidine
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Ulceration of the gastro-intestinal tract affects many mammalian species, including man and the horse. Ulcers may occur in the stomach (gastric), small intestine (duodenal) or hindgut (colonic) in both species (Kuipers et al., 1995; Nadeau and Andrews, 2010). Ulcer pathophysiology is initiated by bacterial contamination of the sensitive gastric mucosa causing inflammation and the production of free radicals. The inflammatory response modulates gastric epithelial cell functioning, leading to increased hydrochloric acid production and damage to the mucosal surface which culminate in ulcer formation (Blaser and Atherton, 2004).
 
Equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS) is reported to affect up to 90 % of horses (Nadeau and Andrews, 2010). Effective therapies for treatment in horses are namely prescription-only-medicines (POMs), omeprazole or ranitidine (Higgins and Wright, 1995; Reese and Andrews, 2009) that block the production of hydrochloric acid; they do not address the underlying inflammatory response of gastric or duodenal cells. Moreover, these synthetic compounds are expensive, administered only under direction of a veterinary surgeon in the UK, and their effects may not persist beyond medication withdrawal (Reese and Andrews, 2009). Therefore, there is a pressing clinical and commercial need for discovering new, non-toxic compounds with effective anti-inflammatory and anti-ulcerative properties for use in veterinary medicine. Moreover, natural biological compounds rather than synthetic drugs (Canter et al 2005) confer an advantage when it comes to market acceptability and licensing restrictions for use in a clinical setting. Phytorigins Ltd., produce and supply a commercially successful oral anti-ulcerative supplement for horses that contains the freeze-dried and ground leaves of Maytenus ilicifolia. Phytorigins’ customers anecdotally report the supplement to be effective in managing and reducing ulcers in horses and its success is enhanced because Maytenus ilicifolia is not restricted for use in competition horses under governing body rules (Federation Equestria Internationale; British Horseracing Authority). However, no studies have investigated whether the use of Maytenus ilicifolia may be beneficial for preventing or managing human gastric or duodenal ulcers, either alongside existing treatment regimens or alone. Moreover, the importance of nutritional supplements that are non-toxic, natural compounds (‘functional foods’) as alternatives to synthetic drugs, are being increasingly recognised for their potential in managing human medical conditions (Lobo et al., 2010).    
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new research on equine gastric ulcer syndrome using plant compounds.
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2015-03-12
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