Phebes was grossly overweight this summer, even though I restricted her intake of Nutrena Safe Choice she continued to gain weight and I felt she wasn't getting her vitamins and minerals because I was only able to feed her a pound or two at most of the Safe Choice. I was also concerned about the rather high NSC (non-structured carbohydrates) in Safe Choice. Our gelding Cree is very sensitive to non-structured carbohydrates and has had severe diet related laminitic problems. We got him sound and healthy again by putting him on a feed with low NSC. Since Phebes was so fat, I felt I needed to change her feed regimen so that she would not start down that path of insulin resistance.
Lite Balance by Nutrena is 17.1% NSC (12.8% starch) based on information from http://www.hooflady.org/requirements.html. It allows her to get her full daily ration of vitamins, and it also is a nice high fiber concentrate feed. When I researched this feed choice it was the closest I could find to the feeds suggested for endurance horses, supplying energy, without the high NSC's which also can cause a "sugar crash", just like when we humans eat candy and suddenly feel pretty crummy...all that molasses is flat BAD for our horses.
Phebes has been on the Lite Balance now for about eight weeks. She has lost that excess fat, and also a lot of her bloat and gas. I don't feel that the Lite Balance contributes in any way to a horse being "hot" either. An added bonus is that it is a pretty safe feed overall for horse's that prone to overweight, and will will stoke the engine as far as energy. If our ride yesterday was any example she had plenty of energy in reserve. I'm going to continue her on this feed and see where it takes us. I do supplement her with a plant fat from flax seed, and beet pulp (with no added molasses) in a daily warm wet mash.
Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance
Favorite Links for training, gear, and memberships!
- National Association of Competitive Mounted Orienteering
- HOW TO CMO
- What is CMO?
- Old Dominion Endurance Rides
- Renegade Hoof Boots
- Riding vs. Racing a discussion with the Duck.
- Trumbull Mountain's INTRO TO ENDURANCE RIDING
- Principles of Conditioning
- Conditioning the endurance horse by SERA
- Short Article: Feeding & Training the Endurance Horse
- Feeding the Endurance Horse, Swedish Author
- Preventing Dehydration In the Endurance Horse, Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association
- Jim Holland's fantastic training links here!
- South Eastern Distance Rider's Association