Cell metabolism normally produces a group of compounds classed as Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) including peroxides like hydrogen peroxide, free radicals, and unpaired hydroxyl groups. These highly reactive molecules have the capacity to damage proteins, cell membranes and DNA. The body’s natural defense against this damage employs a range of antioxidant compounds to chemically neutralize the ROS and render them harmless. Vitamins A, C and E exert antioxidant effects along with enzymes such as the Selenium dependent Glutathione Peroxidase, and non-enzyme compounds like Lycopene, Lipoic Acid and Ferritin. Supplementation of dietary antioxidants is common practice, especially the use of Vitamin E for horses in hard work which generates more ROS requiring higher antioxidant capacity. Antioxidants are also widely used as preservatives in horse feeds and supplements such as oils to prevent oxidation and rancidity.

in    0