The Importance of Vitamins and Minerals

Knowledge of the effects of various vitamins and minerals will help you make informed decisions regarding your feed and supplements. Overall health and resistance to parasites and disease is contributed to good nutrition.

Vitamin A: Aids in resistance to infection and contributes to proper growth and tooth and bone formation. Zinc is necessary for the mobilization of Vitamin A.

Vitamin D: Plays a dual role as both a vitamin and a hormone. It aids in absorption of calcium and phosphorous and prevents rickets.

Vitamin E: An antioxidant, vitamin E stabilizes membranes and protects them against free radical damages. Helps protect tissues of the skin, eye, and liver and vitalizes the testicles for improved virility.

Vitamin B1: Protects against gastronintestinal disturbances, constipation and intestinal inflamation.

Vitamin B2: Important in energy production and essential for normal fatty acid and amino acid synthesis.

Vitamin B3: Aides in replacement of cells that rapidly replace themselves, especially in the skin. Deficiencies may be seen as dermatitis and diarrhea.

Vitamin B12: Plays a role in the activation of amino acids during protein formation. Need for vitamin B-12 increases during pregnancy.

Biotin: Aides in the incorporation of amino acids into protein and reducing the symptoms of zinc deficiency. Plays a major role in the production of hair/fiber.

Calcium: Essential for proper bone development and critical to structure and strength. Calcium absorption is vitamin D dependent. The ratio of calcium to phosphorous is critical as high phosphorus and low calcium diets have been linked to tissue calcification and bone loss.

Phosphorus: Many enzymes and the B vitamins are activated only in the presence of phosphorus. Closely tied to calcium and fluctuations in one mineral will be reflected by subsequent fluctuations in the other. The natural ration of calcium to phosphorus in bones and teeth is 2:1. Proper ratio also aids in the prevention of urinary calculi.

Potassium: Used in intracellular fluid transmission. Maintains cellular integrity and water balance. Hot weather or stress may deplete potassium.

Iron: Necessary for production of red blood cells. Anemia can be aggravated by parasites.

Magnesium: Associated with tissue breakdown and cell destruction. Helps in formation of urea and important in removing excess ammonia from the body. Aides in reduction of stress in hot weather.

Cobalt: Can replace zinc in some enzymes and deficiency shows up as emaciated and anemic animals.

Iodine: Deficiencies may include impared physical development of the fetus, a lower basal metabolic rate and poorly formed bones.

Copper: Deficiency may result in low white blood cell count, kinky or poor quality hair/fiber and impaired growth.

Selenium: A trace mineral that plays a major role in normal development of the fetus during pregnancy and vitality of newborn.

Zinc: Functions indirectly as an antioxidant and is used in bone metabolism and plays a major role in necessary skin oil gland function.

Quality Llama Products, Inc. & Alternate Livestock Supply Catalogue 2008

Buffalo Creek Farm and Creamery, LLC
Farmstead Goat Dairy
3255 Buffalo Creek Farm Road
Germanton, NC 27019