Foods for Circulation in Horses: The nitric oxide connection
Nitric oxide (NO) is the master circulatory molecule in the body. Its function is to increase blood flow by dilating blood vessels. Nitric oxide is crucial for key physiological functions other than circulation, and can act as a hormone, neurotransmitter, and intracellular messenger. It helps curb inflammation, and oxidative stress. It also helps increase oxygen.
Increasing nitric oxide in horses through food:
To produce nitric oxide, the body requires the amino acid arginine. Therefore, it is recommended to feed horses foods that are high in arginine: pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, oranges, brewer’s yeast, nutritional yeast, and the blue-green algae spirulina. Two tablespoons twice a day of pumpkin seeds, or ¼ cup of sesame seeds provides several grams of arginine.
In nature, arginine does not exist without the presence of lysine, an essential amino acid. This fact has spurred some athletic supplement companies to provide lysine with arginine in their formulations. When you choose foods high in arginine, you automatically also get lysine, plus enzymes and co-enzymes that are essential for the bio-pathway to nitric oxide production.
Benefits to horses
Increased circulation is important for tissue healing and repair, as the stimulation of nitric oxide impacts cellular responses including collagen synthesis. Think of nitric oxide as the body’s own internal shock wave.
Increased circulation benefits older horses, helps joint mobility, and can reduce the discomfort of foot syndrome issues including navicular disease, and inflammation of the bursa.
Research into nitric oxide has shown how important the amino acid arginine is in respect to wound healing including collagen formation, cell proliferation and wound contraction. Several studies have highlighted that increased nitric oxide speeds wound healing.
Nitric oxide for athletic performance
Since nitric oxide plays a vital role in circulation, more and more human athletes are supplementing with arginine and arginine-rich foods. Studies have shown that increased nitric oxide can reduce the oxidative stress of exercise, and deliver increased oxygen and nutrients to muscles, organs, and tissues.
Furnace EQ: Formulated specifically for nitric oxide production, Furnace EQ provides organic sesame seeds, organic quinoa, nutritional yeast flakes, oranges, organic pumpkin seeds, and organic ginger extract.
Thermal EQ Warming Topper: Formulated based on Ayurvedic warming and balancing attributes of plants and foods to provide support in colder temperatures. With pumpkin seeds, cinnamon, holy basil, vegetables, colostrum, active yeast probiotics, and more.