Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Possibility of Gluten Sensitivity in Horses Examined - Full Article

by: Casie Bazay, BS, NBCAAM
May 09 2012, Article # 19990

While the exact cause of inflammatory small bowel disease (ISBD) in horses remains unknown, a group of Dutch researchers suspect that gluten intolerance could be a contributing factor of the disease. They recently tested their hypothesis and found that gluten sensitivity in horses is a possibility.

Gluten is a protein composite found in foods processed from wheat and related grains. Inflammatory small bowel disease is a condition that results in malabsorption and maldigestion of feed. Common clinical signs include poor body condition, weight loss or failure to gain weight; decreased appetite, increased gastrointestinal motility, a history of mild recurrent colic, and occasionally, diarrhea.

"Concentrates designated for use in sport horses ... are containing an increased amount of (gluten-rich) wheat ... as we learned from representatives of the feed industry," noted Han Van der Kolk, PhD, DVM, a faculty member in the Department of Equine Sciences at Utrecht University's Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, located in The Netherlands.

In their study, the researchers compared blood work from three groups of horses...

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