Glossary A – C


A is For…

ACIDOSIS is a loose term which is applied to a LOWERED ALKALI RESERVE in the body. From the point of view of a horse in training, as opposed to the many pathological conditions that can result in acidosis, a LOWERED ALKALI RESERVE is the direct result of strenuous muscular exercise. A drop in the pH indicates an increase in the acidity of the blood. In lay terms, this is referred to as "acidosis", but more correctly it is the LOWERING OF THE ALKALI RESERVES.

Ad Lib Constant access to feed – for example, hay made available at all times.

Acetic acid used as a synthetic flavouring agent, one of the first food additives - vinegar is approximately 4 to 6 percent acetic Acid.

Alfalfa The parts of the alfalfa plant that are used are its leaves. In the Middle East, alfalfa is known as the “father of all herbs.” Alfalfa is one of the most nutritious plants on earth and its leaves are rich in calcium, magnesium, potassium, beta-carotene, vitamins A, B-12, C, D, E and K. Alfalfa has also been found to contain all eight essential amino acids. It even contains fluoride which can help prevent tooth decay. Alfalfa is one of the highest fibrous herbs in existence and we are unable to digest its raw leaves.

Ammonium chloride A systemic acidifying agent that has been used as a diuretic and an expectorant.

Ascorbic Acid Vitamin C also known as, ascorbic acid, L-ascorbic acid, dehydroascorbic acid, the antiscorbutic vitamin, L-xyloascorbic acid and L-threo-hex-2-uronic acidy-lactone. Vitamin C is required in the synthesis of collagen in connective tissue, neurotransmitters, steroid hormones, carnitine, and conversion of cholesterol to bile acids and enhances iron bioavailability. Ascorbic acid is a great antioxidant and helps protect the body against pollutants.
Because vitamin C is a biological reducing agent, it is also linked to prevention of degenerative diseases - such as cataracts, certain cancers and cardiovascular diseases. Ascorbic acid also promotes healthy cell development, proper calcium absorption, normal tissue growth and repair - such as healing of wounds and burns. It assists in the prevention of blood clotting and bruising, and strengthening the walls of the capillaries. Vitamin C is needed for healthy gums, to help protect against infection, and assisting with clearing up infections and is thought to enhance the immune system and help reduce cholesterol levels, high blood pressure and preventing arteriosclerosis.

Amino Acids Simple organic compounds, made up of a basic group and an acidic carboxyl group. The "building blocks" for growth and repair of the horse's bones, muscles, and other structures. Horses are able to make most amino acids in their digestive tract. It is believed that only 10 amino acids are required to be supplied to the horse in the feed.
The addition of amino acids to animal diets may improve weight gain and feed efficiency by maximising the use of protein from feed ingredients.

Amino Acids (ESSENTIAL) Horse can not manufacture these amino acids. Need to be in the food or supplemented. ISOLEUCINE, LEUCINE, LYSINE, METHIONINE, PHENYLALANINE, THREONINE, TRYPTOPHAN, VALINE.


Antioxidant A substance that combines with or otherwise neutralizes a free radical, thus preventing oxidative damage to cells and tissues.

Anabolic The phase of metabolism in which simple substances are synthesized into the complex materials of living tissue.

Arginine This amino acid boosts nitric oxide, a compound that relaxes blood vessels. Combats fatigue, stimulates the immune system, helps keep arteries flexible and boosts blood flow. An amino acid in which studies have shown it to respond to bacteria, viruses and tumour cells, promotes wound healing and regeneration of the liver. It also causes the release of growth hormones, and is considered crucial for optimal muscle growth tissue repair.

Asafoetida (Ferula foetida) Recognized by its overwhelming odour which has given rise to at least one of its many popular names, "devil’s dung". A member of the umbelliferae plant family, it originally was a native of Persia and Afghanistan. Very useful for spasmodic flatulence and colic.

Aspergillus Oryzae Probiotic ingredient - aids in breaking down cellulose in plant fiber.

Ayurvedic Herbs Ayurveda is perhaps the oldest system of health care in the world and originates from the Indian subcontinent. Ayurvedic texts were first written down around 3500 years ago, and described how the body worked and which herbs and herbal combinations were most effective for health care. One of the basic concepts in Ayurveda is that people and animals are composed of a mixture of three different energy types - known as "Doshas". Indian herbs are used to balance these three Doshas with outstanding results.

B is For…

Beta-carotene is a substance from plants that the body converts into vitamin A. It also acts as an antioxidant and an immune system booster. Vitamin A is common in green forages in the form of beta-carotene, and the body easily changes beta-carotene to vitamin A. Vitamin A is necessary for the health of the cells that line all tissues of the body – skin, respiratory system, eyes, reproductive organs, the alimentary canal, etc. Deficiency may result in poor hair coats, reproductive and respiratory tract infections, night blindness and/or excessive tearing, and diarrhea. A yellow carotenoid pigment that gives a reddish colour to plants such as carrots and tomatoes.

Bicarbonate a salt of carbonic acid. Lactic acid, which normally accumulates in muscle tissue during strenuous exercise, is a major cause of muscle fatigue. Adding dietary bicarbonate helps reduce the acid load in muscle tissue and also helps to increase blood pH, leading to a quicker recovery from muscle fatigue. A drop in the pH indicates an increase in the acidity of the blood. In lay terms, this is referred to as "acidosis", but more correctly it is the LOWERING OF THE ALKALI RESERVES.

Bioflavonoids When vitamin C is found in nature, it is usually accompanied by bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids are natural food substances in fruits, vegetables, bark, pollen and many other plant sources. Exploring the synergy between vitamin C and the bioflavonoids, biochemists found their role in nourishing the membranes of the capillaries and cells, which are important for the balance of fluids and optimum circulation. The most well-known bioflavonoids include catechin, citrin, flavonals, flavones, hesperidin, quercitin, and rutin. Bioflavonoids also improve the body's absorption of vitamin C, and therefore play a role in the formation and maintenance of collagen.

Biotin is part of a group of vitamins called "water-soluble vitamins". These vitamins are exactly that - soluble in water. Biotin is the only water-soluble vitamin that has bought about obvious visible changes in horses thought to be perfectly healthy. It occurs in natural feedstuffs in very small amounts. It is extremely important for good hoof development. Biotin not only plays a crucial role in hoof quality through keratin production of the hoof horn, it is also one of the B-Complex vitamins. Its primary role is a coenzyme in several crucial complex chemical reactions related to metabolism.

Boric Acid Used for Eye infections – 1Teaspoon to 1L cooled boiled water (flush eyes). Wound care – same as eye infections. Mud fever / Cracked heels – dust on Boric Acid. Thrush – Pack Hoof

C is For…

Calcium best known for its role in bone structure and repair. It is essential for proper bone development, muscle function, and reproduction. Calcium makes up about 35% of the horse's bone structure. It is also involved in other functions - including cardiac muscle contraction, cell membrane integrity, glandular secretion, temperature regulation, and blood clotting mechanisms.

Calcium Montmorillonite is also known as an edible "living clay" for it principally consists of minerals that enhance the production of enzymes in all living organisms. Both human and animal ingestion of calcium montmorillonite minerals have been an accepted practice throughout the world for many years. Calcium montmorillonite mineral deposits have been used by Native American healers for centuries as an internal and external healing agent. The Native Americans would use mineral rich clay on open wounds and for stomach or intestinal distress. The key to these healing benefits is the natural form in which these minerals are found.

Carbohydrates Compounds containing carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Simple carbohydrates (sugars) are derived from molasses and grass. Complex carbohydrates (cellulose and starch) are derived from fibre sources and cereals. Most simple carbohydrates dissolve easily in warm or cold water, whereas complex carbohydrates must be broken down by enzymes in the gut.

Cellulose A complex carbohydrate that is the main constituent of plant cells.

Carotenoids Substance found in yellow and orange fruits and vegetables and in dark green, leafy vegetables. One type of carotenoid (Beta Carotene) is converted to vitamin A in the body. Plants are the source of the carotenoids found in animals.

Chelated The word chelate by definition means to combine with a metal (mineral). It is the bonding between a mineral and an organic molecule. The organic molecule aids in the absorption of the mineral while it also protects the mineral from being prematurely broken down, therefore making Chelated minerals more stable. Chelated minerals or as sometimes described, organic minerals are minerals bound to small proteins (peptides) or amino acids. These small proteins are readily absorbed into the horses body during digestion, resulting in better availability to the horse than typical inorganic mineral sources.

Chlorophyll Science has proven that chlorophyll will arrest growth and development of unfriendly bacteria. It acts to produce an unfavourable environment for bacterial growth, rather than by any direct action upon the bacteria themselves Chlorophyll will bring toxins stored away in cells or in fatty tissue into the bloodstream The chlorophyll molecules closely resembles that of the haemin molecule, the pigment which combines with protein to form haemoglobin. Chlorophyll is the green coloration in leaves. Chlorophyll may help improve immune response, deodorize the body and help cleanse the blood of impurities.

Choline An organic compound related to vitamins in its activity. It is important in metabolism as a component of the lipids that make up cell membranes. It is also important as a source of chemical raw materials for cells and in transport of fats from the liver. Part of the B vitamin group, which is vital for maintaining a healthy liver.

Chondroitin Sulphate is used to form proteoglycan that is an important component of cartilage. The latter covers the ends of the bones at the joints and thus bears the brunt of physical forces that result from movement of the horse’s limbs. This substance stimulates the cells that form proteoglycan, depresses the activity of enzymes causing cartilage breakdown and stimulates production of sodium hyaluronate (hyaluronic acid, a component of sinovial fluid, is chemically similar to chondroitin).

Chromium has an ´´anabolic-like´´ effect when combined with exercise. The trace element Chromium may also help delay the onset of fatigue. It also plays a role in glucose metabolism. The addition of chromium to performance horse diets has been shown to reduce the build up of lactic acid at the end of strenuous exercise or the closing stages of a race, and to increase the horses ability to store glucose.

Citrate A salt of citric acid.

Clinoptilolite is not the most well known, but is one of the more useful natural minerals. It absorbs toxins in the feed that are created by moulds and microscopic parasites and enhances food absorption.

Cobalt only known function is a component of vitamin B12(Cobalamin) - so a cobalt deficiency results in a B12 deficiency.

Coenzymes Organic compounds, often derived from B vitamins, that combine with inactive enzymes to form active enzymes

Collagen A fibrous protein found in cartilage, bone and tendons and other connective tissue - a cementing material between body cells.

Colloidal a colloid that has a continuous liquid phase in which a solid is suspended in a liquid

Colloidal Kaolin a fine white clay used for the manufacture of hard-paste porcelain and bone china and in medicine as a poultice and gastrointestinal absorbent

Copper a component of several enzymes involved in the synthesis and maintenance of elastic connective tissue, the mobilization of iron stores, and synthesis of the body pigment melanin, as well as being involved in bone collagen stabililization. Deficiencies have been implicated in ruptures of the aorta or uterine arteries in aged foaling mares. Trace element – essential for muscle function and haemoglobin, keratin and cartilage formation. Very important for young growing horses.

Creatine has shown in laboratory studies to increase explosive energy in sprinting activities. Creatine may also help delay fatigue in the muscles which allows for a longer and more intense workout. Equine nutritionists state that Creatine may help your horse to hold its top speed longer which is important in racing horses.

Glossary D - F