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This is how you keep your horse's joints flexible and healthy

Posted by Manon Bolhuis on

Zo houd je de gewrichten van jouw paard soepel en gezond

As a horse owner, you know it better than anyone. The joints of horses are a sensitive point. Many owners do everything they can to keep the muscles and joints in top condition. It is of course important to have a good and dosed training schedule for this. But the hooves also have an important influence on the muscles and joints.

Finally, don't forget the food. You can supplement the daily diet with supplements, but how do they work and what can they offer your horse's joints? We are happy to tell you more about it.

When a joint supplement

The choice of whether you will use a supplement to support the joints depends entirely on the situation of your horse. Supplements are usually discussed when there is a problem, for example in case of stiffness or injuries. But there are many situations where you give a supplement to prevent these kinds of problems. Supplements to protect the joints and keep them healthy can be very valuable in the following situations:

  • The growth; The foundation of the joints is laid during growth. From a good foundation, the horse enjoys his whole life. This even starts in the mare's belly during pregnancy, where tissues are formed. Supplements can make a valuable contribution here.
  • (Heavy) performance; When delivering heavy performances, the joints are put under extra pressure. There is pressure on the joints and when overloaded, free radicals are formed in the body. This also affects the joint fluid. Supplements can help protect against free radicals.
  • Older horses; The longer your horse's joints stay healthy, the longer you can be active together. All joints wear out with increasing age of your horse. By supporting your horse with a supplement, you keep the joints healthy for longer.
  • Recovery from injury; If your horse has an injury, it is wise to promote recovery with a supplement. Supplements can help stimulate the body's own cartilage components and make a positive contribution to reducing pain.

Complex of ingredients or single ingredient in a supplement

There are supplements that are based on one specific ingredient and supplements that contain a complex of different ingredients.

If it has been determined by an expert that your horse is really deficient in 1 specific ingredient, a supplement with that specific ingredient can offer a solution for your horse.

In general, different ingredients are the best choice. Ingredients can complement each other in the effect and in some specific cases even reinforce each other.

Liquid or powder supplement

Supplements come in different forms. It is often said that liquid supplements are better absorbed by the horse. That is often true. It is often also easier to administer, but the form is not sacred…

It is important to look at the origin and properties of the ingredients. The ingredient alone does not say everything. For example, ingredients can be pre-processed for better absorption.

PrimeVal Gelatinaat powder, for example, contains gyhydrolyzed collagen. Due to this specific production process (hydrolysis), in which the collagen is split into smaller pieces, the absorption is increased. All amino acids retain their powerful effect. After the hydrolysis, they can immediately do their work in the different tissues. Within 12 hours 95% of the ingested Gelatinate powder is absorbed into the body, which is exceptionally high. So take a good look at a supplement before you make a choice for the form.

Is your horse a master at avoiding eating a powder supplement? Then try adding the powder to the concentrate in combination PrimeVal Omega 3-6-9 oil. Very tasty and another bonus for a shiny coat.

The different active ingredients

When you delve into supplements for joints, you fall from one ingredient to another. It is important to see what suits your horse and to know which ingredient supports which way. We list several of them for you:

  •  Collagen type I
    Collagen Type I is a building material for tissues and joints. Collagen type I also stimulates the body's production of cartilage components (proteoglycans, collagen). It is naturally found in skin, bones, cartilage, connective tissue, ligaments, tendons, blood vessels, hair, hooves. It can promote cushioning and lubrication in joints and protect cartilage.

The beneficial effect of PrimeVal Gelatinaat® on the joints is confirmed in several studies. Collagen type I is also an important building material in the coat and hooves.

  • Collagen type II
    Collagen type II reduces the breakdown of collagen in the cartilage and can make a positive contribution to pain complaints. It is naturally found in the intervertebral discs, ribs, nose, larynx, trachea and trachea branch. In case of damage to the cartilage (for example in joints), the body reacts with an inflammatory reaction. Scientific research has shown that collagen type II can make a positive contribution to helping reduce swelling and pain associated with inflammation. A reduction in swelling and pain has a positive effect on the horse's mobility.
  • Calcium
    Calcium contributes to bone structure and supports the musculoskeletal system. During growth, calcium is a very important building material. In young horses, a deficiency of calcium can lead to abnormalities of the musculoskeletal system. Abnormalities in joints, growth retardation or weak bones are an example of this.
  • Hyaluronic Acid
    Hyaluronic acid injections have been successfully used for human arthritis in the knee. It is expected that the successful effect will be achieved by improving the quality of the joint fluid, stimulating the production of new cartilage and an analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect. Based on this successful therapy in humans, it is also used as a nutritional supplement in horses.
  • Silicon 
    Urtica Dioca (Nettle) contains unique properties that can provide support in the area of joints. Nettle contains a high content of silicon. Silicon has a beneficial effect on tendons, muscles, bones and cartilage. As a result, it offers support for sprains and joint problems. It also ensures the maintenance of flexible joints and healthy cartilage. In addition, nettle supports the horse's immune system.
  • glucosamine 
    Has an important function in the construction of the cartilage. It stimulates the production of cartilage, as it were. It also helps to keep the joints healthy.
  • chondroitin 
    Chondroitin has an inhibitory effect on the breakdown of cartilage. In combination with glucosamine, which stimulates the build-up, it is a valuable supplement for the joints. 

Scientific research into the effect of supplements on the joints

Studies have been done on the effect of building cartilage when using collagen.

These studies have been conducted in both humans and animals. All clinical studies show positive effects of collagen hydrolyzate type II on joint health, for example:

  • Significant reduction in pain
  • Decreased need for painkillers
  • Improving mobility, reducing lameness and stiffness

The images below are a schematic representation of the cartilage improvement with the use of PrimeVal Gelatinaat®.

 Kraakbeen met gelatinaat  

Source 1) Oesser S, Haggenmüller D, Schulze CH, Collagen hydrolyzate modulates the extracellular matrix metabolism of human chondrocytes. Poster presented at EULAR 2006; June 21-24, 2006; Amsterdam.

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