Re: rice bran

Susan Evans Garlinghouse (
Sat, 15 Nov 1997 12:00:49 -0800

Hi Donna,

Thanks, I'm glad you like the posts.

To answer your question, Equi-Jewel is better than the others, but it's
still excessive in calcium and phosphorus, even though the ratio IS
balanced. In some horses, this isn't a big deal. In horses that are
eating southwest-grown alfalfa, then I feel it's a significant factor in
enterolith formation, as it contributes greatly to an alkaline pH in the
hindgut. Also, I don't like very high calcium levels in endurance
horses specifically, because such high calcium tends to lead to a
condition called hypercalcitoninism. This means that because the plasma
levels of calcium are so high, the parathyroid hormone that regulates
pulling calcium from storage in bones gets lazy. During a long
endurance rides, the calcium in the blood isn't going to be sufficient
to supply calcium demand for muscle contraction, and the parathyroid
hormone is, in a sense, going to be left with it's pants down, unable to
quickly mobilize enough calcium from the bones to meet the demand. As a
result, the horse is at the very least going to fatigue faster. And,
very possibly, he could either tie up, or go into thumps, which is one
of the direct results of excessive calcium depletion.

So that's why I'm not even all that thrilled with Equi-Jewel---there are
still too many disadvantages when all of the benefits are very easily
obtained elsewhere. It's better than unbalanced rice bran, but it's
still kinda like adding a piece of lettuce to a big, greasy hamburger
and saying that makes it a health food.

> Also (really I have two questions), I once thought I caused my mare to =
> by over-soaking beet pulp..I live in Fl...when now I think I may have
> under-soaked it. I am afraid of spoilage so I only soaked for one =
hour. I
> would like to feed it for all the reasons stated on =
> carbo source, weight maintenance minus the rocket fuel, ect.

I would think that it's likely you undersoaked the beet pulp. There is
alot of expansion that takes place after just an hour of soaking and it
could very easily have caused a tummyache. You CAN adequately soak beet
pulp in an hour if you start with boiling water, but assuming it was
normal Florida weather (was it cool or hot at the time?), it usually
takes at least a few hours to adequately soak it---out here in So Cal,
even during hot weather, I'll add water to the pulp and let it soak
overnight. Even in hot weather, it's going to take at least a good six
or eight hours before it's going to even start to spoil---and when it
does spoil, it won't go moldy, it'll start to ferment because of the
moisture and sugar content and you'll be able to smell the alcohol.=20
It's an easy way to check if you're in doubt.

Another way to see if it's soaked long enough is to see if there's still
any water left unabsorbed at the bottom of the bucket. I always add
water at the rate of around 2 parts water to one part beet pulp by
volume. It also seems to more evenly absorb the water if you use a big
flat feed tub (one of those big black rubber ones) rather than a tall
bucket. Anyway, if there is still water sitting in the bottom of the
bucket, then in my opinion, it hasn't soaked long enough. When it's
soaked enough, the pulp shouldn't be sloppy wet, it should be nice and
light and fluffy, and the pellets should have totally fallen apart.

Hope this answers your questions, if not, let me know. Thanks again for
the nice post and your kind words.


Susan Garlinghouse