Getting Gutsy: Your GI Health and Enzymes for Digestion‡
Learning how to support your gut health may impact your overall well-being. What you should know about enzymes for digestion and why your gut does what it does.‡
What’s Your Gut Journey Like?
I’ll start out by saying we all have issues with our digestive system from time to time. Occasional digestive discomfort is a fact of life, and sometimes, we really can’t even prepare ourselves for the next time it arises. But is there something you can do to better support your GI and overall gut health? Have you ever considered enzymes for digestion?‡
Let’s talk about it and see if these 4 points will help you understand and see where you might be able to take a bite out of GI discomfort.
Seriously, I remember in seventh grade really getting into the whole digestive process in science class. While many of my classmates thought it was “totally gross,” I thought it was A-mazing! I mean, honestly that whole journey from plate to elimination is kinda’ cool. Let’s take a quick step back and look at digestion basics. I promise, I’ll keep it very general.
The journey begins
First things first—just a little anatomy here:
- Your gastrointestinal (GI) tract, aka digestive tract, your liver, pancreas and gallbladder all make up your digestive system.
- No matter what’s on your plate, the beginning of digestion starts in your mouth. From mechanical breakdown through chewing, to the mix of enzymes in your saliva, the process begins!
- Now you get why your parents and grandparents told you to "make sure you chew your food well!" They were right—the smaller the surface size of the food, the less work that needs to get done in the stomach.
Overall, the digestion journey isn’t that simple and, please know there is GI support out there, especially with Peptic-Care‡ (Zinc-L-Carnosine). It provides antioxidant support for the GI tract and supports the stomach’s mucosal defenses, buffers gastric acid and maintains healthy cytokine release, a process that signals the immune system to do its job.‡
So, back to the journey.
- After you swallow, food makes its way down the esophagus to the stomach.
- In the stomach, the factory starts churning and stomach acid starts to breakdown the food you just ate into even smaller pieces. Thankfully, this is all done rather seamlessly, but for some, the rumbling and distress may kick in.
- After the stomach, it’s a trip down to the small intestine where digestive juices that contain enzymes for digestion continue the breakdown of food particles. Pancreatic Enzyme Formula can help here, aiding in the body’s natural digestive process. It provides a highly concentrated form of enzymes naturally secreted by the pancreas, which are essential to the digestion of food and absorption of nutrients.‡
- The small intestine is where nutrients, water, vitamins and minerals from most of your food are absorbed for use and delivered to other parts of your body for other necessary processes.
- Last stop: The large intestines. This is where waste from digestion is eliminated.
So, how can you better support your gut health? Keep reading:
5 Ways to Support Better Gut Health!
1. Increase your fruits and veggies. Select fruits and vegetables to be the main color on your plate. These whole foods, including dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals, are key for good nutrition. I know, sometimes, the gas and bloating may be a bit much to handle, but slowly increasing your fiber and drinking adequate water will be helpful. Try some papaya, or one of my faves, pineapple. Did you know there are naturally occurring enzymes for digestion in these yummy fruits? The pineapple plant has bromelain, which helps to support digestion! Taken with food, as a proteolytic enzyme, bromelain aids in the healthy functioning of the digestive system.1‡
2. Hydrate. Make certain you drink water. Don’t wait until you are parched—that’s too late. In addition to hydrating yourself, adequate water intake helps to keep things moving through the GI tract while helping to support healthy elimination.
3. Enzymes for Digestion such as those found in Pure Encapsulations® Digestive Enzymes Ultra contains an extensive profile of vegetarian digestive enzymes to support protein, carbohydrate, fat, fiber and dairy digestion. Did you know that these enzymes act to break down cell wall components and phytic acid, promoting nutrient bioavailability of fiber-containing foods?2 Awesome, right?
4. Probiotics. In this wonderful world of microbiota, there are good and not-so-favorable flora in your gut. These good bacteria have really earned a name for themselves. Millions of strains of healthy bacteria help to aid digestion, support the gut and so much more. An all-time favorite is the highly researched GG strain formally known as Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG. It’s credited to support immune, G.I. and overall health.
- Talk to your healthcare provider about your concerns, feelings and any questions you have about your health.
- Think about keeping a food, fluid and mood journal to keep track of what you are eating and how you are feeling both physically and mentally.
- Have questions about supplements? Take this cool 5-minute Vitamin Quiz.
- If you still need some hand-holding (hey—we all do from time to time), then send us a line at Purelyforyou@PureEncapsulations.com where one of our Registered Dietitians would be happy to help.
- 1. Simşek Z, et al. Turk J Gastroenterol. 2013;24(4):330-3.
2. Sandberg AS, et al. J Nutr. 1996 Feb;126(2):476-80.