Folic acid is one of the B vitamins that have several key roles which include the production of red and white blood cells, central nervous function, and the production of the nucleic acids, DNA and RNA that modulates cell regeneration. Cell with high turnover rate such as epithelial cells (cells that line the digestive, respiratory and reproductive tracts), hair and skin, growing fetus, and bone marrow cells all require folic acid. Red Blood Cells are produced in bone marrow and have a limited life span of 100-120 days and therefore, must be constantly replenished in order to maintain adequate blood supply. Deficiencies in folate can result in large, abnormal red blood cells resulting in megaloblastic anemia, characterized by a sluggish metabolism, poor performance and exercise tolerance, pale gums, dysphagia (difficulty swallowing caused by oral ulcers) glossitis (swelling of the tongue), poor hair coat, difficulty gaining weight, reduced appetite and poor cardiovascular health.
Fresh forage is a good source of folic acid, as well as the microflora in the horse’s hind gut that has the ability to produce this vitamin. However in situations when horses have no access to fresh forage, fed high grain diets, have gastric ulcers, long term use of NSAID, (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and/or sulfur containing medications, high stress from competition or travel, the hind gut pH can be altered making unfavorable and often eliminating the good microbes, which reduces their ability to produce folic acid.
Strictly Equine Folic Acid Blend is an easy and convenient top dressing to support the folic acid requirements for performance and competition horses, special needs as in growth, recovery from injury, blood loss or illness, breeding mares and senior horses. Folic Acid is an essential B vitamin required for the production of healthy red blood cells, healthy digestive and respiratory tract, improving tissue repair, maintenance, growth and central nervous system development.