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The benefits of ground flaxseeds are numerous. They are a good source of protein, boosting the overall amino acid pool available for tissue synthesis and repair. They contain vitamins and trace minerals. Their high lignan content (not to be confused with lignin, an indigestible fiber) gives your horse antioxidant protection against disease. And most of all, their plentiful omega 3 fatty acid content promotes health by reducing inflammation, lowering insulin, balancing immune response, and feeding hooves, skin, and hair.
Is one better than another? The Canadian Grain Commission did a recent study comparing the two and found them to be very similar. The alpha-linolenic acid (omega 3) content of brown flaxseeds was 59%, compared to 51% for the golden seeds. Producers of ground flaxseed products also show them to be virtually equal in their omega 3 content.
Either form is nutritious and worthwhile. It is best to feed a product that adds a small amount of calcium to correct for the naturally high levels of phosphorus found in flaxseeds. Be sure to grind them daily, or purchase a stabilized product from a reputable provider.
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Getty Equine Nutrition, LLC
Juliet M. Getty, Ph.D.
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Denton, TX 76207
Phone: (940) 272-0001
Juliet M. Getty, Ph.D. is an independent equine nutritionist offering nutrition services for all life stages and integrative support for disorders and diseases. Your horse's quality of life is Dr. Getty's priority.
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