4 enzyme rich foods that can dramatically improve digestion
Enzymes are very delicate nutrients that are responsible for carrying out virtually every metabolic function. We have around 3000 unique enzymes in our bodies that are involved in over 7000 enzymatic reactions. Simply put, without enzymes we would cease to function.
Unfortunately, the average diet is almost completely void of enzymes. Processed and cooked foods often completely destroy the enzyme content, leaving your body starving for this nutrient that is a key component in your livelihood. If you have any health complaints, chances are you could use more enzymes in your diet, and these 5 will cover that requirement in spades.
Papaya fruit is a rich source of proteolytic enzymes such as papain, which can greatly aid the digestive process. Papain has been deemed as one of the most effective at breaking down meat and other proteins, and it works by cleaving the peptide bonds of complex proteins, breaking them down to their individual amino acids so they can be ready for us in the growth and repair of the body.
Since papaya is rich in natural sugars, it’s a good idea to eat it on its own (not with a heavy, animal protein based meal), preferably 15-30 minutes before a meal.
Bromelain is a complex mixture of substances that can be extracted from the stem and core fruit of the pineapple. Among dozens of components known to exist in this crude extract, the best-studied components are protein-digesting enzymes called cysteine proteinases. These enzymes are not limited to just digestive benefits; however, as research has shown, they also help with excessive inflammation, excessive coagulation of the blood, and certain types of tumor growth.
Since pineapple is also rich in natural sugars, it is a good idea to eat it on its own, preferable 15-30 minutes before a meal.
Bee pollen is often considered one of nature’s most complete foods. It contains nearly all the nutrients required by humans and has abroad spectrum of beneficial enzymes including amylase, catalase, cozymase, cytochrome, dehydrogenase, diaphorase, diastase, pectase, and phosphatase.
Bee pollen can be eaten on its own or put in trail mixes, oatmeal, superfood snacks, and smoothies. Bee pollen can cause allergic type reactions, so be mindful of that when trying it for the first time.
The fermentation process used to make sauerkraut and kimchi was developed centuries ago as a means of preserving vegetables for consumption through the winter months. The Roman army was said to have traveled with barrels of sauerkraut, using it to prevent intestinal infections among the troops during long excursions.
Fermented vegetables are an excellent dietary source of many nutrients, including LIVE enzymes (provided they have not been pasteurized in any way). These live enzymes are accompanied by beneficial probiotics, which makes an exceptional combination for an effective digestive process.
Fermented vegetables can be eaten on their own, but they also go great with any meal as a side. In fact, if you want to improve the digestion of any meal, you should strongly consider a side of fermented vegetables.
Other enzyme rich foods you can consider include melons, mango, kiwi, grapes, avocado, raw honey, kefir, wheat grass juice, and coconut water.