From the Barron Report
Enzymes are proteins that facilitate chemical reactions in living organisms. In fact, they are required for every single chemical action that takes place in your body. All of your cells, organs, bones, muscles, and tissues are run by enzymes. Your digestive system, immune system, blood stream, liver, kidneys, spleen, and pancreas, as well as your ability to see, think, feel, and breathe, all depend on enzymes. All of the minerals and vitamins you eat and all of the hormones your body produces need enzymes in order to work properly. In fact, every single metabolic function in your body is governed by enzymes. Your stamina, your energy level, your ability to utilize vitamins and minerals, your immune system – all governed by enzymes.
Enzymes are produced both internally (most notably in the pancreas and the other endocrine glands) and are present in raw foods that we eat. At birth we are endowed with a certain potential for manufacturing enzymes in our bodies, an enzyme “reserve,” if you will. Nature intended that we continually replenish that reserve through proper nutrition and eating habits. Unfortunately, that just doesn’t happen. Processing and cooking destroy enzymes in food. (Man is the only animal that cooks his food.) In fact, any sustained heat of approximately 118 – 129 degrees destroys virtually all enzymes. This means that, for most of us, the food entering our stomachs is severely enzyme deficient. Even after the stomach acid has done its work, the meal enters the small intestine largely undigested. The less digestion that takes place before food reaches the small intestine the greater the stress placed on the endocrine systems. Recent studies have shown that virtually 100% of all Americans have an enlarged pancreas by the time they’re 40. The bottom line is that regular supplementation with digestive enzymes takes stress off the pancreas (and the entire body) by providing the enzymes required for digestion. In other words, digestive enzyme supplements just may be one of the best insurance policies you can give your body so you can enjoy a long and healthy life
Studies done with laboratory rats have shown that rats eating raw foods live about 30% longer than rats eating diets devoid of enzymes.
Benefits of taking digestive enzymes include:
1. You should notice a significant reduction in indigestion and heartburn problems resulting from too much acid in the stomach.
2.Relief from gas and bloating. (Some people may actually notice an increase in activity for several days as their digestive systems come alive.)
3. Improved digestion of dairy products caused by lactose intolerance.
4.Diminished food allergies due to more complete protein digestion.
5. Greatly reduced flatulence due to more complete carbohydrate digestion.
6. Since the digestion of enzyme deficient food is an extremely energy consuming task, within a few days should notice an increase in energy levels.
7. Relief from ulcers. (Digestive enzymes help with ulcers in two ways. First, they help digest so much of your meal during the 40-60 minutes of predigestion that your body requires less acid in the actual digestion phase.
This means that taking digestive enzymes will help lower the levels of acid in your stomach. (Those who suffer from chronic low levels of acid need not worry. Digestive enzymes supplements help here too by breaking down so much food in the predigestion phase that less acid is actually required. And over time, decreased demand results in increased reserve capability.) A CAUTIONARY NOTE: There is one concern when using digestive enzymes with ulcers — and that’s if you have a severe existing ulcer. What happens is that the protease can actually begin to digest damaged stomach lining tissue. This can cause noticeable discomfort for several days. To avoid this discomfort, if you have a severe ulcer, start with small amounts of the supplement with your meals and build up slowly.
From the Barron Report