Digestive enzymes help your body break down dietary carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. These enzymes are crucial for proper digestion and to prevent symptoms associated with poor digestion. Enzymes are naturally produced and secreted in your digestive system to break down nutrients and improve absorption, so your body can use the essential vitamins, minerals, proteins and other nutrients you consume from food.
What are examples of digestive enzymes?
Here are some examples of digestive enzymes:
- Proteases and peptidases that break down proteins
- Amylase which breaks down carbohydrates
- Lipase which breaks down dietary fats
Digestive enzymes can come from animal sources, such as the pancreas of lambs, cows, or pigs. Plant sources of digestive enzymes include fungi, yeasts, molds and fruits. If you follow a plant-based diet, consider vegan sources of digestive enzymes derived from:
- Pineapple (bromelain, a protease)
- Papayas (papain, a protease)
- Mangoes (amylase)
- Honey (amylase, diastase, invertase and protease)
- Bananas (amylase)
- Avocados (lipase)
- Sauerkraut (protease, lipase and amylase
- Kimchi (protease, lipase and amylase)
- Miso (lipase, protease and amylase)
- Kiwi (actinidain, a protease)
- Ginger (zingibain, a protease)
Take digestive enzyme supplements ensures that the level of enzymes present in your body is sufficient to maximize digestion and your overall health.
What are the benefits of digestive enzymes in a plant-based diet?
When following a plant-based diet, which provides numerous health and wellness benefits, enhancing digestive enzymes with supplements helps prevent or manage certain health conditions, such as:
Improved celiac disease
Celiac disease is a medical condition characterized by inflammatory responses to the ingestion of gluten found in barley, wheat and rye food products. complete with digestive enzymes may help people with celiac diseaseaccording to a review published in 2016 in Current drug metabolism. The researchers found that although more research is needed, protease supplementation may be a useful therapy for people with celiac disease.
Reduction of symptoms of cystic fibrosis
Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease that makes fluid secretions in the body thick and sticky. This health condition damages the lungs, other organs and the digestive system affecting the cells that produce sweat, mucus and digestive enzymes. If your body is not producing enough digestive enzymes because of cystic fibrosis, digestive enzyme supplements may improve digestion and improve symptomsaccording to Harvard Medical School.
Improvements in chronic pancreatitis
Chronic pancreatitis is a long-lasting inflammation of the pancreas that impairs your ability to digest food and make pancreatic hormones and digestive enzymes. If you have chronic pancreatitis, you probably know that this condition can cause upper abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and fatty or foul-smelling stools. According to Harvard Medical School, taking digestive enzyme supplements can improve digestion and relieve symptoms.
Management of pancreatic disorders
The 2016 balance sheet published in Current drug metabolism reports that digestive enzyme supplements are a therapy of choice for managing other pancreatic disorders and diseases, such as exocrine pancreatic insufficiency and pancreatic cancer. Ask your doctor about taking digestive enzymes if you have any type of pancreatic disorder.
Better absorption of nutrients
If your body isn’t absorbing nutrients as well as it should due to a chronic health condition, digestive enzyme supplementation can help! When nutrient absorption improves in your body, you may notice increased energy, better workouts, better focus, and a healthier appearance.
Improvements in poor digestion
If the symptoms of poor digestion are causing discomfort, embarrassment, and affecting your quality of life, taking digestive enzyme supplements can help. Digestive symptoms that bother you may include:
- Abdominal pain
- Stomach pains
- Reduced immunity
Taking digestive enzymes can help relieve these and other symptoms associated with poor digestion to improve the way you feel and give you the confidence boost you deserve.
A stronger immune system
Because digestive enzymes help you better absorb nutrients that boost the immune system (such as proteins, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals) and promote healthy cell function, these enzymes can strengthen your immune system and help you to prevent diseases.
What dosage should I take?
Any dose of digestive enzymes improves digestion and absorption. The 2016 report in Current drug metabolism suggests that the best dosage for you depends on the extent of digestive or absorption problems, your age, and your body weight.
Researchers say general recommendations include taking 25,000 to 50,000 units of enzymes per meal for adults with digestive health issues. Ask your doctor about your individual supplementation needs if you have a chronic condition.
Many Hallelujah dietary supplements contain digestive enzymes in appropriate doses for overall health and better digestion, especially when looking for plant-based enzymes to include in a vegan meal plan.