What Her Gut Can Tell You
Emerging evidence of a link between disruptions in intestinal function and impaired productivity and health in dairy cows is causing researchers and nutritionists to look at fecal pH as a gut-function and health monitoring tool.
Rafael Alejandro Palladino, an Argentinian researcher exploring the intricacies of fecal pH, explained how changes in the metric can be an early signal of digestive and health disruptions. He said overflows of fermentable carbohydrates from the rumen can cause an oversupply of organic acids in the lumen of the large intestine, dropping the pH to potentially harmful levels.
The result of this acidic environment is a cascade of unfortunate events – disruption of intestinal microorganisms, impaired fermentation and nutrient uptake, inflammation of the digestive tract, and diarrhea.
By MAUREEN HANSON
March 16, 2022