By D.J. Dill
This article is introductory to a series of articles relating to the powerful effects of digestive enzyme supplementation. Enzyme therapy is now being used to treat a number of ailments including allergies, obesity, pancreatic hypertrophy, ulcers, infections, candida and more. This article relates mainly to the successful treatment of chronic inflammation with enzyme therapy.
Medical reports dating back to the 1930’s as well as Dr. Edward Howell’s book “Enzyme Nutrition, the Food Enzyme Concept” (1985) validate today’s discoveries. Medical practitioners are beginning to recognize the body’s special nutritional needs in cases of chronic inflammation.
Inflammation is a natural process of the body’s protective response to injury and/or excessive amounts of toxins at the site of an injury. This process usually exceeds what is necessary. The cause of chronic inflammation has to do with the presence of an undigested food substance (usually protein), which is blocking the normal fluid exchange process at the site of an injury. In order to dissolve this blockage, relieve the symptoms and increase the rate of healing, a specific enzymatic reaction must occur.
In realizing this information, one might ask “Why are there undigested food particles floating around in the body in the first place?” The very presence of these undigested substances at the site of inflammation suggests that an incomplete digestion of food has occurred and that there is a deficiency of digestive enzymes in the body. The presence of certain enzymes in the body plays an extremely important role in maintaining proper health because no biochemical reaction in the body can occur without enzymes.
A person can swallow lots of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates and protein supplements, but without enzymes, nothing works. How do we determine whether we are getting enough enzymes in our diet? The presence of chronic inflammation, as well as other conditions like allergies, ulcers, chronic fatigue, cellulite deposits and obesity, high cholesterol, candida, dermatitis, psoriasis, raw vegetable intolerance, and a score of other symptoms, are all strong indicators of a digestive enzyme deficiency.
The clinical nutrition research of digestive enzyme therapy using amylase, protease, cellulase, lipase, papain and bromelain has repeatedly shown significant reductions of excess fluid accumulation (edema), redness, heat, swelling and pain in the injured areas. The overall healing of bruises, sprains, strains and contusions takes place in half the normal time in most cases when supplemental digestive enzymes are consumed.
The main reason enzyme deficiencies are so common is because enzymes are very heat sensitive, even more so than vitamins. Enzymes are the first thing to be destroyed by cooking, pasteurization, canning, microwaving or heating foods above 118 degrees Fahrenheit. The vast majority of the American diet includes eating these cooked and processed foods, as opposed to eating raw fruits and vegetables. Replacing the enzymes that were lost from cooking and processing foods is becoming recognized as a vital method of health maintenance.
As mentioned, protease along with certain other enzymes are being used to treat surgical and accident trauma involving soft tissue injuries because, they digest (dissolve) the protein substances which are blocking the normal exchange of fluid at the injured area. Lipase is another enzyme needed to reduce inflammation because it increases the permeability of the cells, thus allowing delivery of nutrients and the excretion of wastes.
Protease is also known to treat excess alkalinity in the body, as well as chronic infections, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, degenerative disc problems, bone spurs and other related disorders such as sciatica and ligament problems. Oral supplementation of digestive enzymes plays a key role in successfully treating these disorders of the spine.
There are many enzyme formulas found in health food stores, however, the amounts of effective enzymes are relatively low in comparison to a recent formulation by Dr. Robert Green and Paul Gaylon of Herbal Products and Development. Their food enzyme product called “Power Plus” has eleven potent enzymes along with synergistic mineral cofactors in amounts never seen before. This formula is four times more potent than any health food store product.
“POWER PLUS” Food Enzymes full spectrum, high potency, plant source, 500mg vegetable capsules – 200 capsules (33 day supply). This product is all vegetable, preservative free, starch free, wheat free, and dairy free. Persons with stomach, duodenal ulcers or biliary stasis should consult a health care professional before taking this product.