The Importance of Enzymes
When you turn the key to your ignition, your car starts. When you strike a match and put it to tinder, it creates a fire. Blow on those embers and you’ll watch the fire intensity. Chain reactions of cause and effect exist in your body as well. Enzymes, for example, are a cellular protein that help create and accelerate chemical reactions. Without enzymes, your body would be as useless as a car without an engine or a pile of tinder without a match on a cold night.
Interestingly, enzymes are diverse and have specific roles in the body, from helping to detoxify the system to breaking down food into energy. They are also instrumental in blood clotting and hormone production, and to put it simply, they’re either starting it up or keeping it going.
Enzymes are the great initiators, and things don’t get done without them. They get the ball rolling. Enzymes function properly at normal body temperature and optimal health conditions. They are also sensitive to pH level and work best in a sweet spot between acidic and basic. If your body becomes too acidic, it may affect enzymatic function. The same is true when the body is too alkaline. When the body isn’t in pH homeostasis, this can alter the structure of enzymes, which may impact its role and functions.
Chronic illness, inflammation and other imbalances can affect an enzyme’s shape, which may then affect various systems. Pharmaceuticals and other chemicals may also inhibit enzyme production and function. Although the body intrinsically creates enzymes, these conditions can affect our ability to create them.
If you’re low on digestive enzymes, you might experience gas and bloating after eating carbohydrates. You may also experience a sense of fullness and heartburn. Low digestive enzymes and hydrochloric acid (HCL) reduce your body’s ability to break down food and absorb nutrients. These undigested proteins may also result in Leaky Gut Syndrome or further its effects, causing food particles to leak into the blood stream, creating inflammation, food sensitivities and chronic health issues, such as autoimmune disease.
Enzymes are found in food, such as fruits and vegetables, however, food manufacturers have found an advantage to removing them—without enzymes, food looks better for longer on a grocery store shelf. Therefore, food manufacturers now remove enzymes from food to feed their bottom line. They utilize chemicals and processing mechanisms, which on the consumer end, cause issues with digestion since the enzymes necessary for this function are no longer naturally available in the food.
GMO foods and conventional fruits and vegetables are hit the hardest, so try to buy organic or better yet, seek out local farms and farmers markets or grow your own, if possible. Foods high in digestive enzymes include bananas, pineapple, papaya and avocados.
Natural remedies to restore enzyme balance include aloe vera and licorice. Aloe naturally contains vital digestive enzymes similar to those created intrinsically. It also soothes the mucosal lining and promotes healing and repair of damaged tissues caused by chronic inflammation.
Licorice (DGL) deglycyrrhizinated (to remove the constituent of the plant that may cause blood pressure issues if taken long-term) can also help restore enzyme balance and resolve issues within 3-6 weeks of continuous use, and is a gentler and more natural option than Proton Pump Inhibitors.
Our Leaky Gut Defense contains both aloe vera extract and licorice (DGL) to help restore gut balance. Just one scoop mixed in warm water taken first thing in the morning on an empty stomach may help not only manage symptoms but address the root cause.
Leaky Gut Syndrome is one of the main causes of enzyme deficiency, and replenishing and rebalancing enzymatic function is vital in addressing Leaky Gut Syndrome. The two go hand in hand.