Enzymes are critical to life. They’re the proteins that initiate and speed up the chemical reactions that keep your body functioning – converting food into energy, forming new tissue, breaking down old tissue, disposing of waste, and more.
Some of the best-known enzymes are those involved in digestion, found in the saliva, stomach, pancreatic juice, and intestines. They help the body break down food, making it easier to absorb the nutrients. For some people, however, the body’s enzyme production is not enough to support digestive health.
Supplementing with enzymes
Gas, bloating, spasms, constipation, diarrhea, and indigestion after eating are all symptoms that you may be sensitive to difficult-to-digest nutrients, such as proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Incomplete digestion is not only uncomfortable, but can irritate your gut wall and cause vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and macronutrients to pass through your system unabsorbed.[i]
People suffering from enzyme insufficiencies and food sensitivities, as well as those following high-fat or high-protein diets, can help relieve these symptoms through supplementation.
Enzymes and probiotics for overall gut health
Enzyme and probiotic supplements can be taken together to support overall gastrointestinal health. Probiotics help re-establish gut microflora that has been disrupted by illness or medication, discourage the growth of pathogens, support immune function, make vitamins, and break down dietary fibre.[ii]
Natural Factors carries a range of enzyme formulas, probiotic strains, and digestive aids for individual and combined use.
Complete Megazymes contains a broad spectrum of digestive enzymes that are vegan friendly. It lessens indigestion symptoms and promotes better nutrient absorption by helping to break down protein, fats, and carbohydrates. For well-rounded gastrointestinal support, pair it with Ultimate Multi Probiotic, a 12-strain probiotic and prebiotic formula that helps restore intestinal balance.
Intensive Strength MacroGest™ is a plant enzyme formula that supports the healthy digestion of proteins and fermentable carbohydrates (FODMAPs), including beans, peas, cruciferous vegetables, dairy, and wheat. It can be used with IBS Relief Biotic™ a 4-strain probiotic that has been clinically shown to reduce irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms.
ReliefZyme™ is a targeted enzyme formula that helps digest proteins in foods such as gluten and gliadin in wheat and cereal grains, and casein, whey, and lactoglobulins in dairy. It can be combined with Travel Biotic® BB536®, a high-potency, shelf-stable, and dairy-free Bifidobacterium longum probiotic.
Intensive Strength ClenzDida™ is an enzyme formula that helps reduce the overgrowth of opportunistic yeast organisms, such as Candida albicans, and small intestinal bacteria overgrowth. Its blend of naturally occurring enzymes work on an empty stomach to break down food particles trapped in the intestine. Combine it with Travel Biotic BB536, and Peppermint Oil to help relieve abdominal discomfort associated with candida.
Zymactive® is a systemic enzyme formula that contains a unique combination of proteolytic enzymes – those responsible for breaking down protein – including those associated with inflammation and pain1 and those responsible for food sensitivities. Zymactive can therefore be recommended as both a digestive aid when taken with high-caloric meals to help decrease bloating, and for anti-inflammatory and immune function when taken on an empty stomach.
Soothe Digest contains a 4:1 fennel seed extract, anise seed, and caraway seed – three carminative herbs known to help relieve digestive spasms, gas, and bloating. If your digestive upsets are caused by mild-to-moderate stress, pair it with Calm Biotic® to help promote mood balance and Chewable Ginger to help relieve nausea.
Supplementing your diet with the right enzyme formula with added probiotic support can promote healthy digestion and help ease sensitive tummies, while giving you more value and enjoyment out of your meals.
[i] D’Haese J, Ceyhan G, Demir I, et al. Pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy in patients with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency due to chronic pancreatitis: a 1-year disease management study on symptom control and quality of life. Pancreas. 2014; 43(6):834-41.
[ii] Markowiak P, Śliżewska K. Effects of probiotics, prebiotic, and synbiotics on human health. Nutrients. 2017; 9(9):E1021.