Question: Would you please help me understand the starch levels in the attached hay analysis. I feed a horse that I consider border-line insulin resistant. I've read several of your online articles in an effort to figure this out, but the analysis does not include ESC.

Dr. Kellon: The first thing to consider with this analysis is that the grass is still high moisture so need to look at the dry matter figures. You are also correct that WSC is not the indicator you need for IR. In figures from another lab, WSC runs an average of 2.1% below ESC so we can guesstimate an ESC of 9.6% dry matter.  (WSC is on the analysis as total sugars.)  Added to the fairly high starch of 3.5% we get 13.1% ESC + starch. Since a totally dry hay is about 10% water, as a hay this would be 11.8% - too high for an IR horse.