Nutritional Articles

Equine grain-associated disorders (EGAD).

Published: 2004-04-15

Equine grain-associated disorders (EGAD).
This article reviews and discusses the use of grain-based meals to increase the work and growth potential of horses. Improved performance is commonly observed up to a point untill health becomes compromised by equine grain-assiociated disorders (EGAD).The authors describe the term “EGAD” as a group of digestive disturbances involving rapid fermentation and a set of metabolic disorders involving insulin resistance. Two groups of EGAD’s are distinguished: acute digestive disturbances involving rapid, large-bowel fermentation of starches and sugars (1) and chronic/active metabolic disorders involving insulin resistance following repeated meal feeds (2). The article discusses new insights in recent research, critiques certain reports, and appraises alternatives to grain. The authors suggested that risks associated with grain-molasses concentrates are avoided by feeding more frequent rather than larger meals, by using forage only, by supplementing with fats and oils, by using high-fat feeds, or by using high-fat and high fibre feeds. The article is easy readable and has a practical approach.

Reference
Kronfeld, D.S., P.A. Harris. 2003. Equine grain-associated disorders (EGAD). Compend Vet Practnr 25(12): 974-983.

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