Proteolytic enzymes supplement
Our bodies produce enzymes that facilitate numerous reactions daily in our bodies that keep is alive and well, enzymes break down the food that we eat into energy. Proteolytic enzymes function to break down and digest protein, this type of enzyme is found in our bodies as well as in dietary supplements.
Let’s look in more detail at proteolytic enzymes supplement where they come from and what are the health benefits of a proteolytic enzymes supplement.
Why are proteolytic enzyme so important?
A proteolytic enzyme is necessary for many important tasks in our bodies, they are also known as proteases, proteins or peptidases. Proteolytic enzymes are produced by the pancreas and the stomach, they are best known for protein digestion, but they also carry out many other important tasks as well.
What other tasks do proteolytic enzymes do?
Apart from digesting protein, they are essential for blood clotting, cell division, protein recycling and supporting the immune function. Much the same as us humans’ plants depend on proteolytic enzymes to assist them with various jobs such as defending them against insects, and by helping plants to grow and develop.
What is interesting is that people who digest plant-based enzymes have reported several health benefits.
Proteolytic enzymes are a certain type of enzyme that plays a major role in digesting protein as well as supporting the immune function and other vital processes, our bodies produce proteolytic enzymes, but they are also available in certain foods or in proteolytic enzymes supplement form.
Your digestive system naturally produces proteolytic enzymes the main ones are trypsin, pepsin and chymotrypsin.
What foods contain proteolytic enzymes?
These enzymes are also found in foods, two of the best examples are pineapple and papaya, pineapple contains a strong proteolytic enzyme called bromelain, the enzyme is inside the fruit, the skin of the fruit and in the sweet pineapple juice.
The indigenous natives of South and Central America use it as a natural remedy for several health conditions. Papayas also contain a powerful proteolytic enzyme called papain, it breaks down protein it is found in the fruit, leaves and root and has been used for many years to tenderize meat.
Papain and Bromelain
We have established that both enzymes can be got by eating raw pineapple and papaya, however they are also found in a concentrated supplement form. These two are the most common but there are others like Serrapeptase it comes from the silkworm, dietary proteolytic enzymes are also found in
- Kiwi fruit
Proteolytic Enzymes Supplement
Proteolytic enzymes supplement is sold in capsules, tablets, gel caps, chewable, and powder form, some are manufactured from a single proteolytic enzyme other have a combination of enzymes.
Enzyme manufacturers use proteolytic enzymes from two sources, animal and plant, a good example is some of the most popular proteolytic enzymes trypsin and chymotrypsin are found in cows and pigs.
While fruit-based enzymes like papain and bromelain are found in papaya and pineapple.
If you are buying proteolytic enzymes supplements check for the ingredients on the label, you need to know the potency of the supplement some manufacturers don’t put this information on the label. IU is the standard measurement for supplements, it stands for international units or units of activity, it can be difficult to know exactly which potency or strength to purchase.
I recommend that you contact the manufacturer tell them what your health condition is and ask them for advice on the dosage. You will find different labelling on proteolytic enzymes supplements including HUT, USP or SAP.
It can be confusing, I recommend that you look only at supplement brands that show the IU or units of activity, that is the only way to be sure that they are equal.
What are the health benefits of proteolytic enzymes?
Proteolytic enzymes are very popular anecdotal evidence would suggest a range of health benefits;
1. May help with digestion
A lot of people suffer from digestive issues, proteolytic enzymes are commonly used to help with the absorption of dietary protein, for example PERT (pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy) is routinely used to treat pancreatic insufficiency, cystic fibrosis, types of cancer like pancreatic, stomach and colorectal, PERT is also used after gastric and pancreatic surgery.
People with a deficiency in their ability to break down and digest protein can benefit from taking proteolytic enzymes from food and supplements. Kiwi fruit extract has been shown in studies to help in breaking down and digesting proteins, especially milk, cheese, meat and eggs.
A further study showed that a group of people with indigestion reported significant improvements in abdominal pain, bloating, heartburn, loss of appetite and belching.
2. May reduce inflammation
Inflammation is a response by our bodies to infection, proteolytic enzymes have proved in several studies to be effective at inflammation reduction and related symptoms.
A ten studies review of the proteolytic enzyme bromelain found that people with osteoarthritis got relief from the symptoms of pain, joint stiffness and swelling. A further study of rats who were given a combination of proteolytic enzyme trypsin, chymotrypsin and Serrati peptidase found that inflammation was reduced by a greater amount that that of aspirin.
People with sinusitis typically suffer from inflammation in the nasal passages, bromelain is particularly effective at relieving these symptoms.
3. Can promote healing and recovery
Proteolytic enzymes can digest dead cells and are effective for healing wounds, during animal studies papain and bromelain were used to speed up tissue growth by applying it straight onto the skin. Recovery times were also shortened following surgery using the same method.
A study of 24 participants following dental surgery demonstrated by taking a 5-milligram dose of Serrapeptase swelling and pain were reduced significantly.
4. Good for sore muscles
For people who do strenuous workouts or sports people muscle soreness is an issue, one Male study found that when a proteolytic enzyme consisting of Curcumin and bromelain was given there was a significant improvement in muscle soreness and pain when compared to the placebo.
A further study of people who did hill running found that a supplement containing bromelain, trypsin and papain reduced the pain of sore muscles and aided recovery times.
5. May help with IBS
Inflammatory Bowel disease produces symptoms such as bloating, constipation, gas, abdominal pain and swelling, proteolytic enzymes have been found to reduce these symptoms in several studies.
For example, during a study of 126 people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) a papain supplement was given with big improvements in symptoms of bowel movements, constipation and bloating. A study where 90 people with IBS were involved reported that by giving a proteolytic enzyme supplement symptom of gas, bloating and abdominal pain were reduced.
Bromelain has additionally been shown to reduce symptoms of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
6. May reduce bursitis symptoms
Bursitis is caused by inflammation to the small bursa, these are tiny sacs of fluid surrounding the joints, typically inflammation occurs around the hip or elbow areas causing swelling and pain.
Serrapeptase is a proteolytic enzyme that acts to reduce swelling and pain associated with bursitis symptoms.
7. May help with carpal tunnel syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is quite a common condition caused by pressure on the median nerve in the carpal tunnel area of the hand, symptoms include tingling, numbness and weakness in that area. There are many reasons why it occurs, one reason could be inflammation, and this is where a proteolytic enzyme like Serrapeptase can help.
Serrapeptase was used in a 6-week trial for patients with carpal tunnel syndrome, at the end of the trial more than two thirds of the participants both Male and female reported significant improvements in their symptoms.
How to get the best out of proteolytic enzymes
Depending on what you want to achieve proteolytic enzymes can be used in several ways, if you just want to get more of them in your food then eat more pineapple, papaya, and kiwi fruit.
If you have any of any of the health conditions listed above or you want to have faster recovery from muscle soreness then I suggest that you buy avoid quality proteolytic enzymes supplement from a reputable manufacturer where you can clearly see on the label the dosage in IU.
Don’t just go for the cheapest brand take time to compare what you are getting for the money.
Over on Amazon you will find nearly every conceivable proteolytic enzyme brand including dosage, instructions and verified testimonials, Amazon can deliver to any part of the world. If you are taking medication, please consult your doctor or naturopath before starting on proteolytic enzymes.
If you simply want to get more proteolytic enzymes into your food then all you need to do is eat more pineapple, papaya and kiwi fruit, or if you prefer to take a supplement check the label for type of enzyme, potency and dosage Instructions.
Are there side effects?
In general, proteolytic enzymes are thought to be safe to take, however everybody has a different metabolism meaning we don’t all react in the same way to something new being introduced into our bodies.
Some noted side effects that may or may not happen to you include:
- Allergic reaction
- Skin rash
Just be careful and stick to the recommended dosage, always fake with a glass of water on an empty stomach, please note that by consuming big amounts of fruit that contain proteolytic enzymes can cause stomach upset.
Please be aware that bromelain and papain in supplement form can interfere with blood thinners like warfarin or aspirin. Consult with your doctor before taking.
To get the beneficial effects of proteolytic enzymes eat more of the foods that we know to be rich in them or go for a good quality proteolytic enzymes supplement, some may cause side effects or react to certain medications.
Studies have demonstrated the proteolytic enzymes are important for many bodily functions, one is the ability to break food down to give us energy, we know that proteolytic enzymes are found in certain foods and are also available in supplement form.
We know also that these enzymes are good for digestion, decreasing inflammation, easing arthritis pain as well as reducing symptoms associated with IBS. We also know that by eating foods that contain these enzymes or by taking a proteolytic enzymes supplement can benefit your health in many ways.
These enzymes are present in supplements and work on cells, cell tissues and organs in our bodies, they don’t just work on digestive enzymes, if you have been searching for systemic enzymes on the net you may have seen that these letters are written after the enzyme name IU, SPU, SU, or FU.
If you are confused, I completely understand, manufacturers can use a different measurement for the exact same enzyme, so let me explain what all that means:
As a consumer your number one concern should be how potent is the enzyme or how well will it work for you, potency is how you know how active the enzyme is going to be and how long it will take to work. A good example is Serrapeptase where you have differing IU levels, so 80,000 IU, 120,000 IU, 250,000 IU, obviously the strongest dose 250,000 is more potent and will work faster.
Remember IU means units of activity, so the more units the greater the activity. SPU or SU means Serrapeptase units, different manufacturers will interchange the measurement to describe its potency. The higher the number of SPU the more potent that product is.
FU means Fibrinolytic units; you may see this measurement in a natural arterial plaque reducer Nattokinase a standard measurement for Nattokinase would be 2,000 FU per capsule.
IU or international units are used generally to explain the potency or blend of different enzymes or a combination of enzymes.
Should you buy enteric coated proteolytic supplements?
Proteolytic supplements come in two forms enteric coated and non-enteric coated, the enteric coated formula was created so that the effects of the proteolytic enzyme would not be diminished by stomach acid or a highly acidic ph. Supporters of this theory will argue that by coating the supplement means that it will get through the acid unscathed where it is then absorbed by the intestine.
Opponents of enteric coated enzymes will argue that proteolytic enzymes are derived mostly from plants and can live in a higher ph. environment compared to an animal-based enzyme. Systemic enzymes ideally taken on an empty stomach should have less exposure to stomach acid.
Proteolytic enzymes supplement dosage
Which is the correct dosage for you? A lot depends on what health condition you are trying to get help for, the dosage will vary subject to the known symptoms acute or chronic. If you have mild symptoms it stands to reason that you may only need the lower dosage however if your symptoms are chronic then you would be best advised to go for the strongest dose.
If you are considering taking enzyme therapy please consult with a naturopath, someone who has experience in this field, you doctor may have had no training in nutrition and not be knowledgeable about proteolytic enzymes supplement.