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 digestive enzymes

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Court



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PostSubject: digestive enzymes   Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:37 am

Just wondering if anyone has used (vegan) digestive enzymes, and if you thought they were effective.
Basically, I want to take them because I struggle to eat enough each day as I'm trying to bulk up a bit. I'm wondering if digestive enzymes might help improve my appetite by speeding up my digestion, because I can go for 4 or 5 hours before I feel any desire to eat.
My diet is a bit bland because I have 9 different IgG (non anaphylactic) food allergies at the moment thanks to "leaky gut syndrome", so that doesn't help.
I try to eat every 2-3 hours; I find eating "gut busters" causes havoc with my temperamental digestive tract.
Also, would anyone have any general tips for getting enough food down without relying too heavily on protein shakes (I usually have 2-3 per day). I do find blending things into smoothies helps.
I imagine I'm not alone with this problem.
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Pete
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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:29 am

Getting enough calories to grow when in training can be damn hard - being a meat eater doesn't really help either, just look at people on any bodybuilding who are bulking up, you have to hammer the food down you. I've been up to over 7,000 cal for some weight gaining phases & it's just plain uncomfortable!
I have tried digestive enzymes & probiotics to aid digestion - whether they do or not is debatable I think (when I say 'digestive enzymes' I mean the tablets you buy at health food stores, not pancreatic enzymes in acidic-proof capsules that you get off the doctor when you have issues producing those enzymes due to a medical condition).
Basically the idea for digestive enzymes is that when you heat food you destroy the enzymes that are inside them because these enzymes are very fragile. Here's were it gets tricky. Enzymes in food are small chains of amino acids that are 'loosely' held together. Stomach acid is an acid designed especially to break-up proteins into their amino acid pieces. Now if you eat some food & take a digestive enzyme wouldn't the fragile enzyme get broken down before the food & so have no effect on the digestive process? I've asked this question to many people who are supposed to be nutritional experts, loads of 'gurus' & a whole pile of companies selling digestive enzymes & have yet to receive any answer (a couple replied showing they were actually confused between digestive enzymes from health food stores & pancreatic enzymes). The stomach does make enzymes when you eat food, but these are constantly produced & broken down as you digest so that makes some sort of sense.
I may not understand exactly how they work mind you, they may be fragile, but acid resistant for example. So, I'm certainly open to an explanation if there's one out there. As it stands you could just be taking very expensive amino acid supplement? Even if digestive enzymes do work I'm not sure they affect stomach transit times just increased assimilation? I could well be wrong on that point, I've just never seen it mentioned as an effect of digestive enzymes?
As I said I have tried them myself (in fact I'm trying one with a probiotic combo at the moment), so although I'm not convinced about the mechanism they use, I am still willing to see if they have any effect.
Do you actually have 9 allergies or intolerances? I've usually found that people have one main allergy that 'triggers' the leaky gut (say wheat or dairy), the other become issues over time, but can be minimised by avoiding the primary allergen & keeping to a minimum the other foods.

As to the bulking I'd focus on hitting the most calorie dense food you can manage with your issues, stuff like rice, buckwheat, beans (if you can have them), nuts, avocados, olives etc you might have to condense some bulky low calorie foods, so you might blend or juice greens for example so you have more room for higher calorie foods. With so many issues you might need to rely on shakes more than the average if you intend to grow. Tricks like adding oils to foods to increase the calories might help you out in adding calories?
Sorry I couldn't offer more help.
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PhysCultureFan



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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:13 pm

I think Enzymes, Pro-Biotics help if one can fit it in one's schedule and that's my problem. I have Source Naturals Essential Enzymes and I'd do it as they suggest 'open the capsule and spread the powder on your food.' The extra step again, is often something I forget to do. Also, I partake in caffeine unfortunately, I think there are things that play a lot with one's digestive system.

As to whether it is vegan, despite having lactase and yes, we can google to find out what it is to save anyone doing it, the label itself proclaims:

"Hyperallergenic: contains no yeast, dairy, egg, gluten, corn, soy or wheat. ...."

http://www.sourcenaturals.com/products/GP1111/

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Pete
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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Mon Aug 16, 2010 3:08 am

You can get a vegan lactase. Lactase is used to digest lactose, so we wouldn't really need it, but here in the UK at least you can buy lactase that is suitable for vegans Laughing (why you want it as a vegan I don't know???). You actually produce lactase yourself as a small child, but it tends to stop or at least seriously decrease as you get older (hence often lactose intolerance can be an inability to actually breakdown lactose as your body is now adult & wouldn't normally continue to ingest milk products)
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Court



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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Mon Aug 16, 2010 3:41 am

Vegan lactase - how strange, the only use I could see for it would be for a lactose-intolerant breastfeed vegan baby, if that makes sense.

I had a blood test and it said my body has made immunoglobulin G antibodies to 9 different foods, so while this is technically an allergy, its not anaphylactic (which involves immunoglobulin A), and some people call them intolerances. But they're not really intolerances because my body is capable of digesting the foods. (Out of interest, I'm allergic to wheat, peanuts, oats, cucumber, cocoa, brewer's yeast - and therefore everything brewed/fermented, sulphites - which are used in almost everything as a preservative, M.S.G. (which doesn't really bother me), and cow's milk (I had only been completely off dairy for a few months before I has the test done)). I plan to get retested soon, so hopefully some of them will be gone, but I haven't been very good at keeping off them. I hope there's not more. And it will be irritating if the only allergy which is gone is milk.

I have read that enzymes are denatured in the stomach before they can be of any use in the intestines, but I have also seen reputable natural medicine brands making supplemental enzymes. Maybe I should do a symptom diary for a few weeks, hmm, seems like hassle.

Thanks for your help Pete, you're a handy guy to know. Too much oil gives me grief but I try to add a little to most foods. I've been eating jasmine rice with rice milk and golden syrup (cane sugar syrup) and that seems to help as its low G.I. and I get hungry soon afterwards, but the main issue is the protein, I think I also need to do some research on how to make what I can eat taste better.
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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Mon Aug 16, 2010 6:23 am

A good source for digestive enzymes must be Miso and it's equally fermented soya cousin Tempeh ( http://www.soyfoods.org/products/soy-fact-sheets/tempeh-fact-sheet ).

Quote :
According to Elson M. Haas MD, in his book Staying Healthy With the Seasons, "Miso is an alkalizing food and its fermentation assists the body's digestion and metabolism." He goes on to say that "for those who wish to strengthen their systems, miso can be used daily as a broth and is said to be a good tonic…It is a great afternoon drink for those who suffer from late afternoon or post-work symptoms like headache, dizziness, irritability or general low energy." - http://www.moscowfood.coop/archive/miso.html

Miso is so salty tasting.

Kombucha tea may have some of these enzymatic properties too or may just be down to quackery. www.quackcenter.com/kombucha.html
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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Mon Aug 16, 2010 7:25 pm

I just wanted to point out I mentioned Asian foods here but I guess plenty of Western foods have Enzymatic properties. From what I can tell, properly prepared Sauerkraut does http://www.superfoods-for-superhealth.com/sauerkraut.html as well as of course, Apple cider vinegar like Bragg's.

Perhaps there are other foods like this if anyone knows of others.
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PostSubject: Re: digestive enzymes   Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:28 am

Any unheated food actually contains the enzymes in question, the main question is the amount & whether they survive acid immersion?
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