Biozyme The Carolinas Equestrian 01 “All disease begins in the gut.”  Hippocrates, the famous historical Greek physician, is known for this short and sweet quote.  Is something thought to be so precise over 2,000 years ago still relevant today?  And what exactly is gut health?

Gut health refers to the collective viability of the gastrointestinal tract and has an impact on many aspects of overall well-being.  The most intuitive, of course, is digestion and absorption of nutrients.  The horse’s foregut, composed of the stomach and the small intestine, is primarily responsible for the digestion and absorption of protein, fat, and simple carbohydrates like starch and sugar.  The digestion of protein, fat, and sugar is usually relatively easy for the horse. The digestion of starch and fiber is more difficult because they are more structurally complex. Good gut health is very important to making sure these digestion processes go smoothly. In the foregut, good gut health means maintaining a correct and steady pH, maintaining the integrity of the gut lining, and maintaining the activity of the various cells that live there.