An increase in body temperature accelerates the metabolic rate of the cells, and as a result, a variety of byproducts can accumulate in the cells.
One of the main groups of these substances are oxidizing substances, such as free radicals, but mainly hydrogen peroxide, which in turn may cause a phenomenon called oxidative stress.
The effect of these oxidating substances is by generating a chemical chin reaction that is expressed in severe damage to polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are an essential component of the cell membranes.
At high concentrations the cells may even explode due to the damage caused to the membrane.
The cells grapple with these byproducts by producing an enzyme whose purpose is to break down the above substances, with the main enzymes being Catalase and Superoxide dismutase.
In addition to these enzymes there is another mechanism that is based on the usage of antioxidants that are not enzymes. This is where the electrolytes and vitamins enter.
it turns out that different vitamins such as vitamin A, E and also various metals such as zinc and chromium are good antioxidants that moderate the damage, by inhibition of these chain reactions by removing the free radical in the middle. They do this by reduction of oxidants in their environment and thus they actually oxidize themselves. The important antioxidant feature is that in their oxidized state they are relatively stable and thus do not cause damage.
Continuous monitoring of the weather, and electrolyte delivery before peak temperatures can prevent unnecessary damage, suffering and death. This is especially important in chicks, or in large-sized breeds grown at high temperatures.