I have taken digestive enzymes off and on for the past 10 years. More off than on, I have to admit. I’m sure I’ve never taken them for a long enough time to get the full health benefits. After reading Enzymes and Your Health by Dr. Howard W. Fisher, I’m determined to start taking them again – and keep taking them.
Dr. Fisher starts his book with a chapter that gives a very detailed, yet concise, description of the digestion process. He also includes an explanation of enzymes’ role in digestion.
He then goes on to explain exactly what enzymes are, and why a person needs to supplement their body’s own enzymes.
“One of the problems that we continuously face is that not only does our current food supply contain diminished amounts of enzymes, but we have traded off enzyme content for processing and increased shelf life.” –p. 8.
“Past the age of thirty-years-old there is a decrease in the amount of digestive enzymes produced in the pancreas, stomach and small intestine. Furthermore, shipping, food processing and preservatives all deplete the enzyme content of foods…
…How many of us eat raw food diets? According to Gabriel Cousens, M.D., poor mineral content in the soil, pesticides and fertilizers have decreased the enzyme content of raw foods to the point that supplemental enzymes are necessary always!” –p. 22.
Dr. Fisher also explains why an insufficiency of digestive enzymes results in problems in other systems of the body that are seemingly unrelated to digestion. The list of conditions that have been proven to benefit from enzyme supplementation is surprising: fatigue, yeast overgrowth, headaches, heartburn, food allergies, decreased immunity, and many more.
I was especially interested in learning how enzyme deficiency can lead to overeating and obesity, two areas in which I have struggled for years.
“If the body is deficient in enzymes there is the predisposition to eat more in order to get the necessary nutrition. This leads to a vicious cycle, since no matter how much food is ingested the inability to break it down will result in potential malnutrition and the neurologically directed desire to eat more. Continuously compounding this cycle can lead to obesity.” –p. 49.
Dr. Fisher has included many charts and tables that illustrate the role of each enzyme and how they relate to each system of the body. He also cites many studies that collaborate his findings.
He has convinced me about how essential enzyme supplementation is to overall health. I encourage you to read the book and be convinced as well.
In the interest of full disclosure, my husband works for the company that is selling this book, and we do receive a small commission on any books bought from the above link. That said, I do believe everything I wrote in the book review. I am continuing to take enzymes, and I will post any health changes I see as a result.