Food Enzymes:

Improve Your Health with Food Enzymes

By Dr. Ben Kim

Are you confused about what enzymes are and what they mean to your health? This article explains the roles that three different types of enzymes play in maintaining your health.

Enzymes are special compounds that serve as catalysts in almost every biochemical process that takes place in your body. Many enzymes require the presence of vitamins and minerals to function optimally.

Today, we know of more than 5,000 different types of enzymes that are relevant to your health; these enzymes can be grouped into three categories: metabolic enzymes, digestive enzymes, and food enzymes.

Metabolic Enzymes and Health

Every cell in your body utilizes metabolic enzymes to carry out basic, everyday processes. Put another way, you use metabolic enzymes to think, talk, breathe, move your body, and carry out immunological functions, including those that neutralize and eliminate unwanted materials, such as pesticides and tobacco smoke.

Digestive Enzymes and Health

Your body produces more than 20 digestive enzymes that help you digest the foods that you eat. Most of these enzymes are produced by your pancreas, and are secreted into the top region of your small intestine - this is where the bulk of nutrients in the foods that you eat are broken down into small-enough components to be absorbed into your bloodstream.

Food Enzymes and Health

Food enzymes are found in raw foods – foods that have not been wet-cooked at 118 degrees Fahrenheit or beyond, or dry-cooked at about 150 degrees Fahrenheit or beyond. At and beyond these temperatures, food enzymes are deactivated and are no longer useful to your health.

A practical general rule of thumb to determine if what you are eating has been cooked at a temperature that has deactivated food enzymes is this:

If you can eat wet or dry food at its highest temperature (while being cooked) without burning yourself, then food enzymes are active and can help your health.

How do food enzymes promote good health? Food enzymes, including amylases for digesting carbohydrates, proteases for digesting protein, and lipases for digesting fats, help you digest food in your mouth, esophagus, stomach, and small intestine.

Your body produces these enzymes as well. The more food enzymes you eat, the less your body needs to produce them to allow for efficient digestion of everything that you eat.

If you don’t get a substantial amount of food enzymes through your diet, your body has to work to produce what you need for optimal digestion.

Put another way, a diet rich in food enzymes can promote your best health because it reduces your body’s workload; a diet that is deficient in food enzymes puts significant strain on your digestive organs, mainly your pancreas; this strain can lead to premature breakdown and degeneration of your digestive organs and compromise your overall health.

How to Make Sure that You Get Enough Food Enzymes for Optimal Health

How can you ensure optimal intake of food enzymes through your diet? By regularly eating raw foods that agree with you. Raw vegetables, herbs, fruits, and nuts and seeds soaked in water, when eaten in appropriate amounts and chewed thoroughly, provide your body with food enzymes that promote optimal digestion and good overall health.

For extra insurance, you can take a whole food supplement that contains live food enzymes - our green food formula contains a comprehensive combination of food enzymes that I regularly recommend to people who have significant challenges with their digestive systems; the enzyme and probiotic formulas in our green food mixture is what makes it a highly effective nutritional supplement for people with long histories of GI challenges.

Another way to ensure adequate intake of food enzymes is to drink a fresh vegetable juice every day. If you don't have a juicer and want to start juicing regularly, I recommend that you look at champion juicer or the L'Equip XL Juicer.

If you regularly eat baked goods like bread and crackers, you can dramatically increase your food enzyme intake by learning how to make enzyme-rich varieties with a good dehydrator. For examples of enzyme-rich, living foods that you can make with a dehydrator, view:

Flax-Onion Flatbread Recipe

By increasing your intake of food enzymes, you can expect to experience improved digestion, more energy, and even normalization of your body weight; interestingly, people who are overweight often find that they lose weight when they increase their intake of food enzymes, while people who are underweight typically gain healthful weight when they eat an enzyme-rich diet.

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