Glucose is the most important energy source for horses during exercise. Low blood glucose levels are associated with fatigue and reduced performance and maintaining blood glucose levels is especially important during prolonged exercise, when competing and for horses that are lacking in energy. EnerGex increases blood glucose levels in a controlled, safe and sustainable. EnerGex is given by mouth as a paste and is rapidly absorbed, increases blood glucose levels within 30 minutes and can maintain an increased level for 2 hours. EnerGex can also be given after training or competition to aid recovery.
Experimental evaluation of the glycemic response to a standard bolus dose of either Energex or an equivalent amount of sucrose. This is a summary of a study conducted at Oklahoma State University.
Introduction Maintaining blood glucose concentration during exercise is vital as an energy source for the working muscles and also vitally for the brain. During prolonged exercise blood glucose levels can begin to fall as liver glycogen levels begin to deplete. Low blood glucose will seriously affect exercise performance. Many energy supplements containing simple sugars which can lead to undesirable fluctuations in blood sugar levels. EnerGex helps to maintain blood glucose levels during exercise by providing a readily available source of carbohydrate. EnerGex also provides a readily available source of carbohydrate to aid recovery following hard work, racing or competition. EnerGex is made from a type of sugar that is not normally found in your horses’ diet. Once digested it releases sugars that can be steadily converted to glucose to buffer the levels in the bloodstream. It is a low glycemic functional carbohydrate that releases sugar more slowly and so does not produce a big rise, which could be detrimental during exercise. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the glycemic response to EnerGex and an equal number of sugar units supplied in the form of sucrose.
Methods Six clinically normal horses were administered a bolus feed of either sucrose or EnerGex (1g per kg bodyweight) in a cross-over design (with one day between feeds) via stomach tube in 4 litres of water. Serial blood samples (20ml) were collected pre and at 0, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, 180, 300, 480 minutes post feeding into tubes containing fluoride oxalate (5ml; for glucose) and lithium heparin (10ml;), immediately placed on ice before centrifugation and separation of the plasma. The glycemic response for each administration were determined by calculation of the area under the concentration curve and peak concentrations/activities.
Results Compared with sucrose, the rate of increase in plasma glucose was slightly lower and with a slightly later peak (P<0.05). Plasma increased with both by 30 minutes following feeding and thereafter showed a slow rise to 120 minutes. Throughout, plasma concentration with EnerGex was around half that with sucrose.
Conclusion Compared with sucrose, EnerGex produced a similar rise in plasma glucose but the response with EnerGex was around half that seen with sucrose. These characteristics make EnerGex suitable as a readily available source of carbohydrate for horses during or following exercise or in circumstances where food intake is reduced due to travel or illness.