Originally Posted by Summit Equine Nutrition
Drumrunner to my knowledge we don't know what the ideal ratio of 3's to 6's is. I have never seen it published anywhere although I see so many products that claim to be formulated to the ideal ratio. I've read a lot of papers and no-one I've asked has been able to give me a ratio either. Maybe its out there but I haven't seen it. What we know if that fresh quality pasture is about 4 times more 3 than 6. We feed forages low in omega's and then add grains which are higher in 6's and oils that are higher in 6's. They need 6's the question is how much is too much and we don't know. All we have to go on is human research some limited equine research their "natural" diet.
3's and 6's share the same elongase enzymes. The ALA form of omega 3's in flax have to be converted to EPA and DHA. We don't know how well horses convert ALA to EPA and DHA and their ability may be reduced when a lot of O6 is present. This is why I will recommend EPA and DHA directly for horses that have inflammatory conditions.
I have an article about this on my website you might find interesting. Omega fatty acids for allergies.
Clair Thunes PhD
Independent Equine Nutritionist
I'm the same, I can't find any articles, studies, or really anything much that goes into more depth about the ratio of 3 & 6. I've had this conversation with my vet a few times and she can't really find anything either so we're both curious. My horses are turned out 24/7, I don't feed my hay in the summer because our grazing is so rich but fall/winter/spring they have a free choice high quality round bale. Then of course grain, free choice mineral block, and supplement. What do you think about the feeds I use, and would would you recommend anything different?
I have barrel horses, two QH/TB appendix mares and one QH gelding.
Nikki (11) gets 2X a day 1 scoop of Nutrena SafeChoice, 1 scoop Purina Omolene 200 and Omegatin.
Lark (12) gets 2X a day 1 scoop Strategy, 1 scoop SafeChoice, and Omegatin.
Hickory (22) gets 2X a day 1 1/2 scoop Nutrena Life Design Senior which is a recent change from a Safe Choice and Life Design Senior mix.. He also gets Omegatin.
Nikki is a little harder to keep weight on in the winter months so I do add Rice Bran oil and Franam Weight Builder..