Fatty liver and ketosis are nutritional metabolic diseases that high-yielding cows are are prone to get. The addition of bile acids to feed can prevent and treat fatty liver, reduce the incidence of ketosis and increase milk production.
Fatty liver and ketosis during the perinatal period are mainly caused by the accumulation of a large amount of ketone bodies caused by a disorder of the fat metabolism in the liver. There is a high incidence of these conditions that can cause great harm; restoring liver health is the only way to achieve a complete cure.
The perinatal period is the time from 21 days before calving to 21 days after delivery. During this period, a series of changes occur in dairy cows’ nutritional needs, physiological condition, and body metabolism, resulting in a high incidence of nutritional metabolic diseases.
Surveys show that about 60% of cows have fatty liver, 5-10% of which are severe fatty liver, and 30-40% are moderate fatty liver, both accompanied a high incidence of ketosis. Fatty liver and ketosis seriously affect the health and lactation of perinatal cows as well as calf growth.
In late pregnancy, due to the rapid development of the foetus and the need for mammary gland development, lactation and childbirth, cows need sufficient feed to meet their energy and sugar requirements. However, because of the insufficient intake caused by cow food degeneration and reduced rumen volume, a negative energy balance can occur with insufficient sugar precursors.
In that case, cows can only use body fat, so a large amount of non-esterified fatty acids enters the liver. There are 3 things that can happen with non-esterified fatty acids:
For dairy cows, the lipoprotein lipase and liver esterase activities that break down fat are particularly low, and therefore cannot effectively decompose the fat deposits in the liver. At the same time, the amount of very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) secreted by the cow is extremely low, and the fats cannot be transported out of the liver in a timely fashion, causing fat deposits in the liver (fatty liver).
In addition, fatty liver affects the normal functions of the liver, and results in ketones not being transported out in time, which leads to ketosis. This is why fatty liver and ketosis usually occur together.
Bile acids are a substance with various biological activities, which can be used to ensure the health of the cow liver.
Table 2 shows that the milk yield of the treatment group increased by 19.9% compared with the control group.
Bile acids are a feed additive that can be used to protect the liver and intestines, which can effectively guarantee the health of the cow’s energy engine: the liver. Bile acids not only protect cows from metabolic diseases such as fatty liver and ketosis, but also significantly increase milk production.
Author: Dr Li Jinbao, Shandong Longchang