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What Are Enzymes? — an article on the Smart Living Network
April 18, 2010 at 5:53 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

What Are Enzymes?


Enzymes are proteins. Their special function is to accelerate chemical reactions in the body. Enzymes are absolutely essential for almost all bodily processes.

Enzymes help in lowering the amount of energy required to perform a process or cause a reaction, hence making things go faster.

Enzymes can be negatively affected by other substances. An inhibitor is comprised of molecules that specifically decrease an enzyme's activity potential. Activators do the opposite; they increase an enzyme's activity. Most drugs and poisons are inhibitiors. Enzymes can also be affected by temperature.

If multiple enzymes are involved in a particular function in a specific order, it's called a metabolic pathway.

Enzymes are involved in 4000 different biochemical situations. One of the most important functions enzymes are involved in is digestion. Digestive enzymes are responsible for breaking down starches, proteins, cellulose and other food substances. Without enzymes, it would be impossible for the intestines to absorb nutrients.

In food production, processing or even cooking, a lot of the natural enzymes are destroyed. Only raw foods still contain their full enzyme potential. Eating a diet of only raw materials, however, is often difficult or impossible, considering the amount of processed food on the market compared to raw foods and the time constraints that most people operate under.

As we age, we naturally experience a decline in enzymes, which can over time deteriorate our health. If one function (such as simple digestion) takes a huge amount of enzyme potential, other enzyme functions can be left by the wayside, such as metabolic enzymes, which are used in cellular and body repair.

People who suffer from enzyme deficiency often experience several uncomfortable symptoms: acid reflux, heartburn, gas, bloating, cramping, constipation and/or diarrhea. Enzyme deficiency could also lead to more severe problems, like diabetes, hypoglycemia, high cholesterol, IBS, colitis, Crohn's disease, chronic fatigue, weight loss, weight gain, bloating, high blood pressure, and circulatory complications.

There are several ways to promote better enzyme health. Eating raw fruits and vegetables (or very lightly steamed) can help with enzyme production and therefore establish better general health, especially if eaten at the onset of a meal. You can also take enzyme supplements.
A product like this works by using ingredients such as pancreatine, amylase, protease, collagenase, elastase, and other components implemental in good health.

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