Enzymes and You

Prior to his retirement in 1970, Dr. Edward Howell, a well known food enzyme researcher, said why he believed, “Enzymes may be the key factor in preventing chronic disease and extending the human lifespan. Enzymes are substances which make life possible. They are needed for every chemical reaction in that occurs in our body. Without enzymes, no activity at all would take place. Neither vitamins, minerals, nor hormones can do any work — without enzymes.” In 1946, Dr. Howell wrote the book, “The Status of Food Enzymes in Digestion and Metabolism.” His most recent book is entitled, “Enzyme Diet.”

Most people today don’t realize it, but enzymes are a vital element in maintaining good health. Enzymes are responsible for every reaction in the human body. Without enzymes, we simply die. When enzyme production by the pancreas is insufficient, we can also have many, many health problems.

At this point you might be asking, “If our pancreas produces enzymes, why do we need to be concerned about getting them in our diet?” The answer is, our body has a limited ability to produce quality enzymes. Every time our pancreas is called on to produce enzymes, we are “using up” that ability to produce a good copy of the enzyme. Nature designed our systems to work with the enzyme content in foods provided in the natural world. When we eat raw food, it goes to the upper portion of our stomach where it is held, it is primarily here where digestion occurs. We have all been led to believe that the “acids” in our stomach digest the foods. This is just not correct! It is the enzymes within the foods that are responsible for digesting the food.

Once food has been acted upon by the enzymes, the material drops down into the lower portion of the stomach where additional enzymes go to work. The hydrochloric acid within the stomach does one primary thing. It lowers the pH of the stomach contents so other enzymes can go to work on different material. The point is this, when there are no enzymes within the food we eat, we set up an unhealthy series of events.

Whatever food is properly broken down from the enzymes supplied by the pancreas is absorbed as nutrients. The remainder of what we eat simply goes through the process of rotting. This process gives off gas, harmful waste products and damages the good bacterial culture within the colon.

The pancreas, being forced to produce massive amounts of enzymes, usually 2-3 times a day, way more than it was ever intended to do, gradually loose its ability to produce enzymes. With this, the entire metabolic system is slowly affected along with it, thus the aging process, the degenerative changes with the breakdown in our immune systems. Just imagine, if you will, let us say there has been 40 to 60 years of this taking place in our bodies. Thus making each and every meal we eat without enzymes causing a strain on the immune system just through the fact that our white blood cells contain enzymes that are used to digest and destroy foreign invaders and dead material our bodies try to get rid of. When our food is enzyme deficient, this causes much strain upon the immune system.

Another aspect to this is the continuous depletion of metabolic enzymes within the body. Enzymes within the blood stream and throughout the body that help clean the system, by breaking down fats, and other harmful materials. Think about it, what might happen if these enzymes are not there, and you go 40 or 60 years with the effects of accumulated fats within the system, and the damaging waste products which build up in the system would cause? Is there any wonder that heart disease is a major killer in this country? There’s only one enzyme that can break down fats within the body, and that is lipase. Without lipase, you don’t digest fat, you store it. This alone can result in weight gain and heart disease.

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Good health or bad health isn’t something that suddenly just happens. Whether we experience good health or bad health is a result of our life style and our daily habits which produce the end results. You simply can’t abuse the system like that for so many years and not expect there to be a significant damage in the process.

So what is the answer? It is most important that one change their lifestyle, which can improve this situation. The simple facts are this, if you eat foods that have been processed or cooked above 118 degrees, you can rest assured that there are “no enzymes” within that food. You also can’t expect to eat a full course meal of cooked foods, and then just eat a “raw” salad, expecting the enzymes within the salad to “digest” your entire meal. In almost every case, foods contain enough enzymes to “self digest, and no more.

The other choice is to ignore this basic truth and do nothing. The results for this kind of decision making are being experienced today by millions of people all over the country. The United States has the best medical system on the planet, yet we Americans have the worst health of any modern nation on earth. Doesn’t that tell you that there is something wrong? The choice really is yours to make!

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