Enzymes are certain substances which are found in all of our living cells. They are designated to act as catalysts in certain processes like metabolism. While all of the enzymes needed to digest carbs, fat and protein can be produced by your body, you can get certain natural enzymes from food. People who are suffering from digestion problems can get benefits from them.
4 Natural Digestive Enzymes
1. Bromelain in Pineapple
You may have experienced an unpleasant mouth burn after consuming significant amounts of pineapple, this is because of the enzyme existing in the pineapple, namely bromelain. Bromelain is a proteolytic enzyme which helps you to digest proteins properly, and it is usually found in the stem of the pineapple. This particular substance is used to treat a range of different issues including pain associated with arthritis.
2. Papain in Papaya
Just like the bromelain, the papain in papaya can also help you to digest protein. It is usually used to serve as a tenderizer for different meat. Meat contains strong fibers which make them difficult to cut and process. In this case, using papain can cleave the protein chains that maintain these strong fibers, thus tenderizing the meat.
3. Amylase in Mango
If you buy some hard mangos and let them stay on the counter, you will find that they will start to get soft in a few days. This is because certain enzymatic processes take place because of the amylase. It is one of the natural enzymes which can help you break down certain starches into maltose.
4. Multiple Enzymes in Honey
Quite a few different enzymes are found in honey, such as diastase, invertase and catalase. Honey contains enzymes to help you digest carbohydrates and protein by breaking them down into amino acids, thus ensuring the proper functioning of your body.
Other Ways to Improve Digestion Naturally
Natural digestive enzymes are capable of improving your digestion, and you can also try some other ways to improve your digestion naturally.
1. Consume Probiotics
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria which live in your intestines and produce beneficial vitamins as well as short-chain fatty acids. Adding probiotics in your diet can help reduce inflammation and aid in digestion.
You can get these beneficial bacteria by eating fermented foods such as yogurt, kimchi or kefir, or you can take supplements.
2. Have Good Eating Habits
The truth is that the way you eat will have a tremendous impact on your entire digestive system. By changing some bad habits, you can improve your digestion significantly. Here is what to do.
- When you are eating, try to be relaxed, or you can eat in a relaxing environment.
- When you feel upset, your digestive system will also be affected, so don't eat at such time.
- Don't watch TV when you are eating. Just focus on the meal.
- Chew your foods carefully. There are enzymes in your saliva, too. If you chew your foods longer, these foods will be digested more properly.
3. Keep Yourself Hydrated
Water is very important in the digestive process. It helps digest solid foods properly. If you don't drink enough water, the digestion process will surely be affected.
You need to consume about 80 ounces of water every single day, and be sure to drink water between meals rather than during meals.
4. Avoid Certain Foods
Your digestive issues might be caused by excessive toxins. This could cause constipation, diarrhea or in certain cases, both of these. Make sure to eliminate the foods which will cause inflammation, and replace them with nutrient-dense foods. Here are some more tips:
- Avoid artificial sweeteners. Artificial sweeteners can alter gut bacteria, causing a disturbance in the digestive process.
- Avoid processed foods. Processed foods are full of calories, but without much nutrition. They are full of refined sugars, preservatives, artificial flavors, etc., which can cause diseases of the digestive system.
- Eat less gluten. Gluten may irritate your gut and cause indigestion.
5. Try Herbal Remedies
Natural digestive enzymes can help with your digestion, and some herbal remedies also have such effects. Try the following ones.
- Licorice: It is an herbal supplement which can help treat stomach cramps, and relieve the symptoms of acid reflux such as heartburn. You can take this herb in capsule form, or you can drink it as a tea by boiling it in a cup of water.
- Peppermint oil: It is, without doubts, one of the best ways to relieve stomach pain as well as bloating. You can take it in capsule form, or you can chew some peppermint leaves to get the benefits.
- Ginger: Ginger can help relieve stomach pain and alleviate nausea, thus helping with digestion. You can make a ginger tea, have a candied ginger or take ginger supplements to get its benefits.
- Aloe vera: The juice of aloe vera can aid in digestion. It’s rich in vitamin C as well as amino acids which can increase the blood flow to your digestive system.
- Chamomile: Chamomile helps you relieve muscle cramps or painful spasms. You can drink chamomile tea once a day to get its benefits.