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They may not always come across your radar when it comes to staying healthy, but enzymes are a necessary and essential element for almost every process that occurs in your body. Enzymes are responsible for aiding molecule transportation around the body, metabolic processes and food digestion and nutrient absorption. The importance of digestive enzymes in particular is necessary to understand, because proper breakdown of food into the nutrients that we need relies on them.
Our bodies have natural digestive enzymes and we can also get them from food sources. As we age, our natural stores become depleted and when a particular digestive enzyme is lacking and the nutrients we require will not be available for our bloodstream. A number of health concerns can occur as a result of enzyme deficiency ranging from minor symptoms to serious disorders. The good news is that even if your natural digestive enzyme levels are low, there are supplemental capsules you can take to maintain proper digestion. While enzymes are available through food, this is not always a guaranteed source, since cooking and food preparation kills off many enzymes.
The benefits of digestive enzymes are extensive and important to your overall health. While they assist with the digestion process, without the nutrients produced, the health of your entire body would suffer. The enzyme protease helps with protein breakdown. Proteins are the building blocks for every cell in our body as well as tissues and hormones, so protease is essential for healthy growth and development.
Many people think growth and development refers to children but the truth is adults require proteins for the growth and repair of cells as they age. Protease enzymes digest the proteins from your food, specifically the peptide bond that holds the protein molecule together. The amino acids that result from this are released and absorbed into the bloodstream. They are delivered to any part of the body that requires building blocks for new tissues or cells.
Breaking Carbohydrates for Energy
The enzyme amylase helps to digest carbohydrates which are the main source of energy for your body. The second carbohydrates enter your mouth, the pancreas and salivary glands release amylase to immediately start the breakdown process. The carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars to be absorbed in the bloodstream. If you have an enzyme deficiency, the process may not be as effective. The food that should begin digestion in the mouth, will reach the stomach still mostly intact. This means it will be harder to break down fully, so there will be more waste and less nutritional value.
Making Use of the Fat
There is such a stigma around fat that people often forget how much we do actually need it. The enzyme lipase helps to break down fat molecules into glycerol and fatty acids. As fat is consumed, the pancreas releases lipase as do the stomach and mouth. Bile is additionally sent from the liver to filter the fat particles and break them into small droplets. The fatty acids and glycerol are absorbed and transported to cells to be used or stored.
Fat is essential for the proper absorption of certain vitamins such as A, D, E and K as well as protection. A certain amount of fat is required as a protective layer around your organs and when carbohydrate levels are low, fat can be used as an alternate energy source. A lack of the lipase enzyme means fat goes undigested which increases waste and problems for the intestines and your health.
Why You Need Digestive Enzymes
As previously mentioned, over time your natural levels will decrease and food does not always provide adequate quantities. In our research, we have found that 1MD digestive enzymes are the best option to ensure your digestive system continued to work efficiently and your health stays optimal. Given the connection between your gut and immune system, a healthy gut will also mean improved immunity. The proper digestion of food also ensures that the amount of toxins reaching the bloodstream is minimal, which supports the immune system.
These enzymes are able to repair holes in the intestinal wall that may have been created from food allergies or inflammatory responses. Leaky gut syndrome can be cleared up which means inflammation throughout the body can be reduced. Less inflammation means healthier joints, digestion and overall immunity. Additionally, the more accurately food is broken down, the more nutrients there are to absorb and with a healthy gut, these nutrients will benefit every part of your body. Essentially, digestive enzymes allow you to get the most from your food.
Certain foods contain enzyme inhibitors which block the actions of your natural enzymes which can cause health problems. By taking supplemental enzymes you can counteract these inhibitors that are found in egg whites, wheat germ, beans, seeds, nuts and potatoes. Additionally enzymes help with the digestion of hard to process proteins like gluten and lactose. Even if you do not have an allergy or intolerance to these, enzymes can make their digestion smoother which is less discomfort and problems for you.
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While we are on the subject of digestion, is your family maximizing your nutrition. Learn how to change your diet with Weston A. Price, Traditional Foods in a Modern World.