Sunday, May 9, 2010

Belly Flat?

How do you feel after you eat a meal? Energized or ready to take a nap? I usually feel the latter. And on top of it I tend to experience a lot of bloating and abdominal discomfort especially after eating certain foods. This is what initially lead me to a predominately Vegetarian lifestyle. First giving up red meat, pork, and chicken. Still the discomfort and bloating continued. I also tried eliminating certain foods from my diet, like milk. I never was a milk drinker to begin with even as a child, so this was very easy to give up. Switched to Soy milk and then due to the estrogen in soy, switched to Almond Milk. Tried acupuncture, going Vegan, colonics, you name it. Still no remedy.

Then I started thinking about how allergies develop over time, which prompted me to do some research and this is what I found.

"Eighty percent of our body’s energy is expended by the digestive process. If you are run down, under stress, living in a very hot or very cold climate, pregnant or a frequent traveler, then enormous quantities of extra enzymes are required by your body. Because our entire system functions through enzymatic action, we must supplement our enzymes. Aging deprives us of our ability to produce necessary enzymes. The medical profession tells us that all disease is due to a lack or imbalance of enzymes. Our very lives are dependent upon them!" The Healing Power of Enzymes, Dr. DicQie Fuller

The body is progressively losing its ability to produce enzymes with major drops occurring roughly every ten years of life. Symptoms of this include heartburn, gas, constipation, bloating, bowel disorders, food allergies, ulcers, lack of energy and reduced functioning of the immune system.

Have you noticed that you cannot tolerate or enjoy certain foods like you did before? Enzymes are needed for the digestive system to work. They are necessary to break down food particles so they can be utilized for energy. The human body makes approximately 22 different digestive enzymes which are capable of digesting carbohydrates, protein and fats. Raw vegetables and raw fruit are rich sources of enzymes. While all raw foods contain enzymes, the most powerful enzyme-rich food is sprouted seeds, grains, and legumes. Sprouting increases the enzyme content in these foods enormously.

Now as much as I love my fruits and veggies, I am not ready to live a Raw food lifestyle, yet.The following digestive enzyme supplements aid digestion:

AMYLASE works to breakdown carbohydrates i.e. starches, sugars
BROMELAIN taken from pineapple plant, helps break down proteins
HCL hydrochloric acid stimulates pancreatic secretion, activates pepsin and sterilizes the stomach from bacteria and parasites
LACTASE needed to break down lactose found in milk products
LIPASE works to break down fats into fatty acids and glycerol
OX BILE improves fat digestion, stimulates bile flow, aids gallbladder
PANCREATIN contains protease, amylase, and lipase, functions in the intestine and in the blood
PAPAIN extracted from papaya fruit, aids in protein digestion
PEPSIN breaks down proteins, function depends on availability of HCL
PROTEASE works to breakdown protein into amino 

The more food that you can eat raw, the better. That said, I have added a Digestive Enzyme supplement to my diet and have noticed quite a difference. I take one capsule either before or with every meal. I chose Source Naturals Bio Align Daily Essential Enzymes, which I purchased at my local Whole Foods. Many other brands are available. Now when I eat I feel energized and that the food is actually moving through my body the way it was intended to.

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