But, how do you know which one (if any) is right for you?
Because there are just SO many enzymes out there, I break down the most common enzymes, what they do, and what you NEED to know about them in this post.
Not everyone should be taking digestive enzyme supplements; and not all of them are created equal.
As a Certified Health Coach, I find that many people with digestive issues, I am one of them, want to jump straight into using a supplement. And many times I would rather try other strategies first. Not to mention, that some supplements can be harmful if used inappropriately.
So, let’s dive into a few of the common digestive enzymes, what they do, and who should NOT take them.
What are digestive enzymes?
Technically, “enzymes” are compounds that help critical biochemical reactions to happen in your body. These reactions can be anything, from making neurotransmitters like serotonin, to burning food for energy, to breaking down food we eat into smaller pieces that our guts can absorb.
Oh, and they all end with “ase”.
As I just hinted, “digestive enzymes” are specifically those enzymes we use for digestion. They’re enzymes that our digestive system naturally makes and secretes when we eat.
Now, all of the “macronutrients” we eat (carbs, protein & fat) need to be broken down into their individual (smaller) parts so that we can properly absorb and digest them. They’re just too big otherwise, and if we don’t absorb them properly, we can get symptoms of fatigue, malnutrition, digestive distress, or a host of other symptoms.
It is these individual (smaller) parts that our body amazingly rearranges and uses to create other larger molecules that our body needs.
The most common digestive enzymes you’ll see on product labels are:● Amylase – Helps to break down starch into its sugars.● alpha-Galactosidase – Helps to break down specific “fermentable carbohydrates” into its sugars.● Lactase – Helps to break down lactose into its sugars.● Protease – Helps to break down protein into its amino acids.● Bromelain and/or Papain – Help to break down protein into its amino acids.● Lipase – Helps to break down fats into its lipids.
Who should consider taking digestive enzymes? Before you decide, ask yourself how many fruits and vegetables do I eat everyday? Do you get 9 to 13 servings everyday? And if you are sick, have any illnesses or pregnant, do you get 18 to 22 servings everyday?
I would always recommend that you see a qualified health care practitioner for an expert opinion on whether your issues can be related to digestion, and which, if any, supplements can help you. But Remember Doctors are not nutritionist, remember you need to get to the root of the problem. Not mask the problem. It’s all about a lifestyle change it’s our diet that we need to change. What you’re eating and what you’re doing. What to do to change your health around.
One reason for these symptoms can be that food particles are not broken down properly, and the larger pieces travel further down the digestive tract to the microbiota where those little critters start breaking them down themselves. And this is definitely troublesome for certain people.
Don’t get me wrong, a healthy gut microbiota is absolutely essential for good health. And more and more research is showing just how it can affect not only our digestion, but also our immune system, and even our mood.
What do I need to know? – Medical conditions
Of course, you should read the label of any products you take, and take them as directed, especially if they’re not specifically recommended for you by your health care practitioner who knows your history.
Here are two critical things to be aware of:
1 – Digestive enzymes that break down carbohydrates into sugars are not recommended for diabetics, or pregnant/breastfeeding women.
This is because taking them breaks down more carbohydrates into sugars than your body normally would; so, anyone at risk of blood sugar issues should take caution.
2 – When it comes to enzymes that break down proteins into amino acids, there are a few people who should avoid them because of potential interactions. That is if you have an ulcer, or are taking blood-thinners or anti-inflammatories, or if you’re having surgery.
The reason is because the digestive enzymes that break down protein are thought to cause or worsen ulcers, as well as have the ability to “thin” the blood and prevent normal clotting.
What do I need to know? – Possible Side effects
If you find that your symptoms get worse, or even if they don’t get better, you should probably stop using them. Simply I have been there. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. I know I needed to find a Solution to better my Health. It simply change my lifestyle!!! Change my Habits!!!
Allergies are always a possiblity, so if you know or suspect you’re allergic, then you should avoid them.
And, as always, keep supplements away from children.
Before considering a digestive enzyme supplement. They only masked the problem and don’t get root of problems.
You shouldn’t just jump to supplementing with digestive enzymes without a proper diagnosis, or trying a few strategies first.
My first recommendation for digestive distress would be to relax more, eat slower, and chew more thoroughly. This helps to break down food and can put less stress on your digestive tract. Eating 5 meals a day.
The second step would be to try eliminating certain troublesome foods from your diet (dairy & gluten, for example) and see if that helps.
This WHY don’t take supplements, you don’t know what is in there, has afficial colors and favors, sweeteners, who knows what is in there. Supplements go through you, doing more harm than good. People dont have a vitamin deficiency we lack Whole Food Nutrition.
Each capsule Juice Plus contains more live enzymes and nutrients than several servings of whole, raw fruits or vegetables, or glasses of juice. The enzymes are still active. Additional plant enzymes are added and scientifically balanced with the vegetable and fruit concentrates to increase nutrient content and aid in digestion.
When I introduced to product that has a food label (NSF)and found Solution to getting more fruits and vegetables in everyday and to bridge those gabs and goes into the blood stream. Also backed up by research. Has improven reduced oxidative stress, reduces inflammation, protects DNA, more energy, helps with regular bowels, helps with cravings, and craves more fruits and vegetables. Finding a Solution and giving people Hope!
(Juice Plus has Food Label NSF seal) fruits, veggies and berries!
I recommend that you:● Read your labels carefully (who should take them, how to take them, when to stop taking them).● If you have a medical condition or are taking medications speak with your doctor or pharmacist. ● what are putting in your body? Is food? Are used to take a supplement to help my my digestive system, not to be more now I just eat cleaner and healthier diet made from Whole Foods and I take juice plus capsules , omega and shakes to fill in those gaps. Made from whole foods! Making sure I get enough in my diet every day. 45 Whole Foods nutrition along with a healthy lifestyle. Exercise, attitude and nutrition.
Recipe (food containing bromelain & papain): Tropical (digestive) smoothie
1 cup pineapple, diced
1 cup papaya, diced
1 banana, chopped
1 cup coconut milk
1 scoop of Juice Plus Vanilla Complete
ice if desired
Put all ingredients(except ice) into the blender and blend. Add ice if desired.
Serve & enjoy!
Tip: The levels of enzymes in whole pineapple and papaya aren’t as concentrated as taking them in a supplement; so if you’re not allergic to these delicious fruits, you can try this smoothie.