Can Vitamin E Prevent Cushing’s Disease? - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Can Vitamin E Prevent Cushing’s Disease?

As horses age, they become more susceptible to pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID), an endocrine disease which occurs in about 20 percent of horses older than 15. PPID, formerly known as Cushing's disease, causes horses to grow long, thick haircoats that don't shed, a cresty neck, and a pot belly.

PPID is the result of oxidative damage of the brain, reports EQUUS magazine. The damage kills the nerves in the hypothalamus, causing it to secrete excessive amounts of hormones. Supplementing the equine diet with vitamin E can help prevent the oxidative damage that leads to PPID.

Horses naturally get vitamin E from grazing. If horses can't be on pasture because of equine metabolic syndrome (or other issues), it's beneficial to supplement his vitamin E intake. Though supplementing a horse's diet can't replace good management or proper nutrition, vitamin E supplementation via a multivitamin can be helpful. 

Older horses may benefit from specific vitamin E supplementation. While there are no studies showing that vitamin E supplementation prevents PPID from occurring, it may help, and it cannot hurt.

Read more at EQUUS magazine.  

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