The best digestive enzymes for leaky gut ensure the breakdown of all food so that undigested food is not impacting the gut lining and feeding bacteria in the small intestine.
The health benefits of digestive enzymes range from helping to prevent bloating and digestive health symptoms such as gas, loose stools, SIBO, food sensitivities, dysbiosis, leaky gut, and malabsorption. Digestive enzymes are very beneficial for gut health because every food can be difficult for the body to digest if there is insufficient enzymatic activity.
Leaky gut can occur due to malabsorption and undigested food impacting the gut lining and providing fuel for organisms to ferment, thrive, and multiply, such as dysbiosis, candida, and SIBO.
SIBO and candida overgrowth contribute to leaky gut, so digestive enzymes for leaky gut contain enzymes to break down various sugars and starches.
Health Benefits of digestive enzymes and who would benefit from using digestive enzymes?
Anyone experiencing digestive symptoms can likely benefit from digestive enzymes even if your symptoms appear in the large intestine or colon. Most often, the root of the problem starts long before the colon.
It all starts where food is digested. Or in the case of an enzyme deficiency where food is not fully being broken down and thus contributing to a host of digestive symptoms further along the digestive tract. Undigested food in the stool and bloating after eating sugar, carbohydrates, and starches are common symptoms indicating an enzyme deficiency.
The function of digestive enzymes is to help with the breakdown of food so that the body can absorb the nutrients within the food. If you are not properly breaking down and absorbing the nutrients within your food, then all that goodness needed to fuel your cells found in whole foods may not be fully absorbed, resulting in malabsorption and nutritional deficiencies.
Benefits of Digestive enzymes for bloating
Undigested foods, especially unprocessed starches, are food for opportunistic bacteria to increase, such as the yeast candida, contributing to those uncomfortable digestive symptoms such as gas and bloating. During fermentation, a lot of gas is produced due to organisms such as candida fermenting undigested starches.
Utilizing a digestive enzyme to help break down all the starches and sugar will help to prevent bloating as there will no longer be an excess of undigested starches to feed opportunistic bacteria.
Digestive enzymes for leaky gut
Bacteria that are meant to only be in the colon can migrate up into the small intestine if undigested food is not being fully absorbed and is sitting in the small intestine providing fuel for bacteria and candida. These organisms in excess can produce nasty endotoxins that impact the gut lining and contribute to developing leaky gut.
When the gut lining becomes leaky due to candida, certain bacteria in excess, or undigested food, this opens the door for food sensitivities to develop along with inflammation, immune challenges, and allergies. As you can see, things are starting to get very messy!
All undigested food impacts the villi and microvilli of the small intestine, causing the lining to become leaky. When a leaky gut develops, undigested foods pass through the intestinal lining in inappropriate sizes. The immune system does not recognize the undigested food as a nutrient used by the body. Instead, it acknowledges the undigested food as a foreign invader.
The immune system then mounts an immune response against the undigested food by producing antibodies against what would have been a nourishing food if enzymes had adequately broken down the food. Food sensitivities and immune challenges can develop due to an enzyme deficiency and poor digestive function.
Types of digestive enzymes for leaky gut and how do digestive enzymes work?
Digestive enzymes work by breaking down large macromolecules such as protein, fat, and carbohydrates into smaller building blocks so that the body can absorb them.
The three main types of digestive enzymes are:
- Proteases and peptidases enzymes which break protein down into amino acids
- Lipase enzymes break fat down into fatty acids
- Amylase enzymes break down carbohydrates such as starches and sugar into simple sugars and glucose
While these are the main enzymes, many more enzymes can help with the breakdown of specific sugars so that sugars will be broken down and absorbed instead of providing undigested sugars for opportunistic bacteria to ferment, thus causing a leaky gut.
The enzyme lactase acts upon the milk sugar lactose. Those people who don’t tolerate milk can be due to the body lacking the ability to produce the enzyme lactase.
The enzyme phytase helps to break down phytic acid found in nuts, seeds, and grains. Soaking and sprouting your grains and nuts before cooking also helps to deactivate and break down phytic acid, which can irritate the intestinal lining. Phytic acid can also impair the absorption of minerals found within foods that contain phytic acid.
The enzyme alpha-galactosidase helps break down complex carbohydrates in foods that can be difficult to digest, such as beans, legumes, and cruciferous vegetables. These foods can cause bloating and gas when not broken down appropriately.
When to take digestive enzymes?
Digestive enzymes are taken with main meals at the beginning of the meal or mid-meal as they will help with the breakdown of that meal. The purpose of the amylase enzyme found in our saliva is to start the digestion of starches in the mouth, so always remember to chew your food well.
Supplementing with digestive enzymes is very beneficial for someone who has difficulty breaking down and absorbing their food. If you experience digestive symptoms such as a leaky gut, upper abdominal bloating, and gas. . One of the best digestive enzymes for leaky gut is Pro -Digestion Intensive by Seeking Health which includes 20 different enzymes to help with the breakdown of food.