In order for cow to achieve high milk production, her internal system needs to be in top condition. The stress of transition could make this a challenge.
Understanding free radicals
Free radicals are a natural by-product of cellular metabolism.
Under normal situations, the cow's body will make sure to balance free radicals and antioxidants at acceptable levels.
However, there will be problems when free radical production exceeds the body's ability to keep the level balanced.
During periods of stress, the cow will produce excessive amounts of free radicals.
Recognizing danger zone
When too much free radicals are produced, it is a serious concern because they are unstable molecules that can damage other molecules when they come into contact.
Free radicals can change how well important enzyme work, damage the physical structure of cells and even cause mutations in DNA.
This will affect the cow's immune system and reduce milk production.
Formulating rations as a solution
By studying the role antioxidants play in counteracting free radicals as well as knowing the critical times a cow might be out of balance, we can formulate rations to help the cows cope with stressful situations.
It is crucial to understand metabolism, free radicals and everything happening in the cow's body during transition.
With that being said, it is not as simple as adding more antioxidants to the ration.
It is important to know that different antioxidants will play a different role in combating free radicals.
Hence, supplementing more of one specific antioxidant might not improve the cow's performance.
It is advised to supply a balanced amount of several types of antioxidants during periods of increased metabolism to make sure the cow's body is in balance and performance at its peak.