//Horse Power: Beet pulp and coconut

Horse Power: Beet pulp and coconut

Nature gives us everything we need, sometimes we know it and sometimes we don’t. In nature we find so much variety in medicinal plants or fruits of the earth that nourish us and help cleanse the body. This is how the benefits of beet pulp and coconut for feeding horses are discovered. Today we are going to tell you how profitable beet pulp is and how it influences when the equine ingests it.

Clare MacLeod - Unmolassed sugar beet pulp - a versatile feed for horses and ponies.

Sugar Beet
Sugar Beet

Beet pulp helps gain weight

If the problem you have is that your horse does not gain weight or does not have the one it should have … Then the beet pulp is the option you need for your equine to start climbing a couple of kilos.

Additionally, best of all, we are talking about a totally natural food. No chemicals that pollute your horse’s organism.

Beet pulp is rich in fiber, a fiber that even resembles that of oats. But beet is naturally formed to make the horse gain weight.

Which causes the animal to eat it without any problem and at the same time the health of the animal is not exposed.

There are those who go to the veterinarian looking for a solution to the lack of weight of equine … And curiously the doctor’s answer is: supply beet pulp so that the animal begins to gain those kilos it needs to be at the ideal weight according to its race and size.

Once we begin to investigate this food we realize several things that we will share below.


What is beet pulp?

Beet pulp is a source of highly digestible fiber from sugar beets. This is what is left after the sugar is extracted from the sugar beet.

In this way the beet processing industry has something useful to do with the pulp. At the same time the pulp is one of the cheapest foods available to complement your horse’s diet. In fact, in terms of its energy values it is very similar to oats, but the energy comes from the digestible fiber and not from starch so it is healthier.

Sugarbeet Pulp Pellet
Sugarbeet Pulp Pellet

What nutritional value does beet pulp have?

Beet pulp table
Beet pulp table

Beet pulp has approximately the same protein as a good grass hay. In other words, it has an average of 8 to 10%, however, it is higher in calories than hay.

Additionally, beet pulp contains a good source of digestible fiber, it is high in calcium and raw fiber, although it basically has no vitamin content.

Why feed the horse with beet pulp?

Beet pulp is very easy to chew and that makes it a useful, ideal food, and a good complement to the equine diet. It also has a good digestibility.

Among the benefits of this food is that it is very good for horses that have problems with their teeth.

Even in horses that are prone to colic, although any horse will benefit from the high fiber content and an additional source of water in their diets.

Beet pulp benefit in the equine diet

  • Being high in energy (calories), it makes it easier to gain weight.
  • It serves as a prebiotic because it favors the growth of the “good” bacteria in the intestine.
  • Reduces nervousness in hot horses.
  • It is a slow release energy source that is beneficial for raid horses.
  • Promotes hydration by incorporating water, acting as a reserve of water and electrolytes in the intestine.
  • It facilitates chewing because it is a very soft forage, which is very useful in animals with dental problems.
  • It is a very appropriate food for horses with a predisposition to rhabdomyolysis, who need low starch diets but maintain energy.
  • Reduces the presence of dust in the air, so it is very useful in horses with asthma.
  • Reduces the incidence of laminitis from nutritional causes, in two ways:
    • By favoring the beneficial flora of the intestine, the “bad” flora does not proliferate.
    • The levels of lactic acid formation are so low that no toxins related to laminitis are produced.

Other foods for the equine diet

Just as beet pulp is very positive in the diet of horses, there is another food that also stands out. This food is coconut. Next we will see the advantages and disadvantages that coconut has in feeding horses.

Coconut another source of nutrition

As we said at the beginning of this article, nature gives us everything we need. Both humans and animals can take what it offers and use it for our welfare.

Coconut is another very tasty food that horses like and it is good to include it, without excesses, in their diet. This food can be found in several presentations: grated, in tozos or pulp.

Various desserts are made with coconut … but in the case of horses it is also allowed to be used creatively. And horses like the taste and sensation they cause when they eat it.

Coconut is a non-structural low-carb fruit that helps lower blood glucose levels and control insulin. In this sense, it is recommended to supply coconut flour and coconut oil to our horses. These provide important nutritional components for horses. Both forms are rich in protein and high level of fiber. But the main reason why they are added to the equine diet is because of the fat content.

Coconut flour contains less than 2% starch (non-structural carbohydrates). Therefore, coconut flour does not cause starch-related disorders such as colic and laminitis. Additionally, the high protein, fiber and fat content make this an ideal food component in the equine diet.

As with other high-fat products, coconut oil has very high levels of energy and produces about twice that of starch or protein. It is an easily digestible energy, without heating the horse as with high cereal diets.

Grated Coconut
Grated Coconut

The nutritional profile of coconut flour and oil:

Disadvantages of coconut nutrition

We know that coconut is a fruit with a very pleasant taste on the palate … Maybe that’s why there have been cases in which owners have given their horses high doses of coconut. This is also not healthy because it brings an imbalance in the animal’s diet, which is why all extremes are bad.

Coconut is very good but if supplied in excess it could cause problems. The coconut diet tends to be high in phosphorus and low in calcium, and this imbalance can be a problem when fed in large quantities.

Also an excessive diet in coconut can cause an imbalance in the Zinc – Copper relationship. However, you can start supplying the horse with coconut flour in small portions or combined with desserts such as carrot balls with coconut flour.

By the way, carrots are perhaps, like apples, the favorite food of horses. That is why we invite you to culinary creativity so that I can give you coconut, beet pulp, carrots and apples in a varied and delicious way.

How to feed our horse?

As we learned today, coconut and beet pulp can be very important foods in the diet of horses. However, this does not mean that we will only feed them with these foods. Remember the maximum of giving a balanced diet. Gustavo Mirabal recommends that from today we increase the presence of these fabulous foods and maintain a nutritional balance in the diet of our horses. Do it and believe me, your horse will thank you.






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