Optimizing animal health with essential oils is something that has become a subject of scientific study. That being said, Kansas State University professors have recently conducted a study exploring the effectiveness of a variety of essential oils in deterring the growth of the bacterium strain: Fusobacterium necrophorum. Read all about it in this article by the Wisconsin State Farmer.
Optimizing Animal Health With Essential Oils
MANHATTAN, KS – Kansas State University researchers have found that essential oils can play a role in livestock health.
Essential oils are removed from plants and distilled into concentrated forms that distributors say support immunity and other functions of the body.
Two Kansas State University professors have conducted a research on using essential oils in livestock health management. The success of this research has great potential to introduce a natural alternative to chemical-based solutions for livestock health issues. It is noteworthy that the findings of this study are not only beneficial to the well-being of livestock. The use of more organic medications for animal health issues caused by bacteria also ensures the safety of consumers.
How Do the Findings Link Essential Oils with Animal Health?
Professors Evan Titgemeyer and T.G. Nagaraja conducted a study published in the Journal of Dairy Science as well as the Journal of Animal Science. The proponents experimented with a variety of compounds found in common essential oils (i.e. eugenol, guaiacol, limonene, thymol, and vanillin). Moreover, the aforementioned compounds were tested for their ability to deter the growth of Fusobacterium necrophorum. Researchers have identified this specific strain of bacteria to be associated with several health issues in cattle and other livestock.
The researchers were able to come up with results stating the compounds limonene and thymol are most effective for this purpose. The proponents extracted these compounds from lemon oil and thyme oil, respectively. Additionally, between the two successful compounds, researchers found limonene to be almost as potent as tylosin. This is a noteworthy feat as tylosin is the compound currently commercially available. Breeders often use this as an antibiotic as well as a feed additive. In addition to this, cattle breeders use thymol to prevent the growth of bacteria. They also use thymol to reduce the incidence of liver abscesses in their cattle.
Using Essential Oils in Animal Health
Given the findings of the study, the addition of oils such as lemon oil and thyme oil to cattle diets may improve the efficiency of the livestock and meat industries. According to research, a cattle breeder’s use of supplemental essential oils may help improve production rate. Additionally, essential oils may also improve the quality of meat produced from cattle.
Watch this video by Brett’s Barnyard to learn more about using essential oils for livestock:
Do you have any experience using essential oils to help with animal health purposes? Please feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!