Many people often ask what the benefit of digestive enzymes are- the answer is simple, without them, our body would not be able to process food. We are not so much “what we eat”, but instead what we digest. That leaves the question, are digestive enzymes the answer to better digestion and gut health?
If you are not getting a good combination of the right digestive enzymes to support digestion and absorption of nutrients from your meals, it won’t make too much difference in what foods you are taking in.
In addition to helping with the chemical breakdown of food into smaller components that are more easily absorbed, digestive enzymes and their ingredients may also support a healthy gut, microflora, and a healthy immune system. So how do digestive enzymes work and should you consider adding them to your daily routine?
Understanding What Digestive Enzymes Are
Digestive enzymes are a group of enzymes that are used by our body to break down macronutrients- proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. They break these down into their individual nutritional components to ensure optimal digestion and nutrient absorption. Specific enzymes are responsible for breaking down specific nutrients. Amylase, for example, facilitates the digestion of carbohydrates and starches.
Individuals with certain health concerns and digestive problems often lack key digestive enzymes needed by our body. This can cause many negative effects- bloating, gas, diarrhea, and others.
Supplementing with digestive enzymes may be beneficial for those who need additional digestive support. Our Digest IQ is a full-spectrum, plant-based enzyme blend that can support gastrointestinal health and be great to take during times of digestive discomfort and with meals to ensure nutrient absorption and utilization.
Types of Enzymes
All digestive enzymes play a specific role in the digestion and absorption of nutrients in our body. Below are some of the main types of digestive enzymes:
- Amylase: helps break down starches into simple sugars in our body and is found primarily in the saliva.
- Alpha-galactosidase: essential for breaking down starches that are tough to digest that can cause gas for many, including beans, broccoli, and cabbage.
- Cellulase: responsible for the digestion of cellulose, a fiber type found in the cell wall of many plants.
- Glucoamylase: assists with breaking the bonds of common starches to help form simple carbohydrates.
- Invertase: helps in the hydrolysis of sucrose, or table sugar, into fructose and glucose.
- Lactase: catalyzes the breakdown of lactose, a type of sugar found in milk products.
- Lipase: an enzyme produced by the pancreas that helps your body digest and absorb fat.
- Peptidase: an enzyme responsible for splitting peptide-protein chains into individual amino acids.
- Phytase: facilitates the digestion of phytic acid, a compound found in plant seeds, nuts, grains, and legumes.
- Protease: assists with breaking down long chains of proteins into amino acids.
Reduced Enzyme Production
Many people have reduced natural enzyme production. This can hinder your body’s ability to digest and absorb nutrients in the food you eat efficiently, which can lead to many negative effects. This can impact your pancreas, bowels, ability to digest gluten and cause stomach discomfort. In addition to this, it can also decrease bowel transit time and lead to weight gain.
Supplementing With Digestive Enzymes
Individuals with reduced natural enzyme production and digestive discomfort can benefit from supplementing with a natural digestive enzyme blend such as Digest IQ to help restore digestive balance in your body.