While we’re on the topic of digestion, let’s chat about our 4th pillar of health and gut health companion, enzymes! This is going to be a longer post, but it’s worth the read!
Enzymes are crucial to the digestion and assimilation of food and play a primary role in promoting gut health. Undigested food wreaks havoc on the body causing overgrowth of yeast, fungi, parasites, bacteria and microorganisms, which are the beginning of disease and inflammation in the body. Enzymes are biological catalysts, which are made of proteins, that speed up chemical reactions and unlock the vitamins, minerals and amino acids in food.
Enzymes are very specific, and each type of enzyme will only “break down” one type of “food.” Fats are broken down by enzymes called lipase and this process happens in the mouth. Lipase are in your saliva. Proteins are broken down by enzymes called protease (aka pepsin) and this process happens in the stomach. Carbohydrates (aka starches) are broken down by enzymes called amylase and this process happens in the small intestine.
Enzymes cannot work, however, without co-factors, and each enzyme is designed to work with a particular co-factor. You’ve heard of these co-factors – they’re called “minerals.” Unless an enzyme is accompanied by its co-factor/mineral, or a substitute co-factor/mineral, it will simply sit around doing nothing. There are eighteen co-factor/minerals in human nutrition.
Unfortunately, today’s modern diet often creates dietary imbalance with both minerals and enzymes. This is why supplements are important: they can help us maintain dietary balance, so we can get the most nutrients from our foods. Young Living has 4 enzyme support options, Essentialzymes-4, Essentialzyme, Allerzyme, and Detoxzyme, plus one specific to kids, Mightyzyme.
We’re going to focus specifically on Essentialzymes-4 and Essentialzyme in this post. Choosing one of either of these two will comprise your 4th pillar of health. You can learn more about each enzyme supplement in the graphics.
(Thank you to The Oil Posse for much of the above information and several of the graphics!)
Here’s a breakdown on Essentialzymes-4 and Essentialzymes:
Essentialzymes-4 is a multi-spectrum enzyme complex specially formulated to aid the critically needed digestion of dietary fats, proteins, fiber, and carbohydrates commonly found in the modern processed diet. The dual time-release technology releases the animal- and plant-based enzymes at separate times within the digestive tract, allowing for optimal nutrient absorption. Essentialzymes-4 contains Fennel, Rosemary, Tarragon, Ginger, and Lemongrass essential oils, as well as Anise fruit. Each of these play a part in healthy digestion, among many other things. It’s worth doing some research to learn more about their benefits!
Essentialzyme is an advanced, multienzyme complex that promotes digestion and assists in the assimilation of nutrients. Enzyme supplementation is particularly important for people who need extra support for their pancreas and bile duct so that enzymes are not prevented from reaching the intestines. Essentialzyme contains tarragon, peppermint, anise, fennel, and clove essential oils to improve overall enzyme activity, and support healthy pancreatic function. If you’re looking for that type of support and/or enzyme support that’s gluten-free, Essentialzyme is your preferred option.
You can learn more from YL’s founder, D. Gary Young, regarding the importance of enzymes in his blog post, “Commitment to Enzymes and Good Health:” http://www.dgaryyoung.com/blog/tag/essentialzymes-4/.
If you’d like to know even more about Allerzyme, you can check out a blog post I did on it last month.