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I don’t know about you, but it really disturbs me to see the growing prevalence of chronic disease in today’s society. Most Americans − more than 219 million, in fact − are seriously overweight or obese, and many of them suffer from obesity-related disease. Sluggishness, fatigue, irritability, and malnourishment are all-too-common characteristics of modern living. Many people, despite their best efforts at eating healthy and trying to live healthier lives… just aren’t seeing the results they expect.
It’s a dire situation, and one that perhaps you yourself are facing. Maybe you’ve started to pack on a few extra pounds and are wondering to yourself, why isn’t this working? Believe it or not, you can eat the healthiest foods in the world while exercising regularly and still not see positive results if your body isn’t actually digesting the foods you eat. And by “digesting” I’m not talking about popping a few Tums or taking an acid-reducer after a meal.
What Your Food Might Be Missing for Proper Digestion
Every time you eat, your body initiates a very complex process of breaking down and assimilating your food. Or at least it’s supposed to. Unbeknownst to many, this important digestive domino effect often isn’t working as it should. This is why too many folks experience indigestion, acid reflux, flatulence, bloating, and other symptoms of poor digestion after they eat. Even worse is that, over time, these symptoms can turn really ugly − morphing into conditions like Crohn’s disease and even cancer.
In many cases, the missing piece that causes all of this are enzymes. Or more specifically, a lack of digestive enzymes. Enzymes are the energetic catalysts that turn food into usable nutrients, and yet they’re also some of the most delicate components of food − easily destroyed by heating, processing, and pasteurization. Most of the foods that people eat today are grossly deficient in enzymes, which means their bodies are having to work overtime to compensate.
So… what are some solutions? Here are five things you can do that can make a world of difference to your digestive health and make your efforts at eating healthy much more productive.
#1 – Eat More Raw and Fermented Foods
Living foods in their natural, unprocessed state are loaded with enzymes, so this is a good place to start. Incorporating more raw foods into your diet, straight from nature, is a great way to help ensure that your body is getting all of the enzymes it needs to break down food and send it where it needs to go throughout your body. Almost every food that isn’t raw is lacking or completely devoid of enzymes, so think about this every time you grab a snack or prepare a meal.
Cultured and fermented foods are another great source of enzymes. In fermented foods the pre-digestion process has already been kick-started through the introduction of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) and helpful acids, which help to naturally generate more enzymes in food. Kefir, yogurt, sauerkraut, kombucha, kimchi, raw milk, and sourdough are a few examples of nutrient-dense cultured and fermented foods that are rich in enzymes.
#2 – Chew Your Food Thoroughly
Food isn’t the only place where enzymes are found − your body makes them, too. But in order to take full advantage of this digestive enzyme reservoir, you have to know how to effectively tap it. The first step is to thoroughly chew your food every time you eat, as this is how the body jumpstarts the process of turning whole foods into amino acids, fatty acids, cholesterol, simple sugars, and nucleic acids. All of these serve as the “fuel” to keep your body healthy, nourished, and strong.
“Particle size [affects the] bioaccessibility of the energy of the food that is being consumed,” says Dr. Richard Mattes, a professor at Purdue University in Indiana. Dr. Mattes presented research at the 2013 Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting and Food Expo in Chicago that showed that the longer a person chews food, the better able the body is to digest it. “The more you chew, the less is lost and more is retained in the body.”
#3 – Avoid Enzyme-Inhibiting Foods
In addition to chewing longer and eating more slowly so your body has a chance to process it all effectively, it’s also important to minimize foods that contain enzyme-inhibiting constituents that actually impede digestion.
So-called “anti-nutrient” enzyme-inhibitors are often ignored in the healthy eating paradigm, but they’re critically important to be aware of − especially if you suffer from gastrointestinal problems. Many processed foods contain enzyme-inhibitors such as chemical preservatives, refined sugar, chemically-processed and treated white flour, and synthetic sweetening agents.
Even foods that many people think of as healthy such as peanuts, wheat germ, nuts, seeds, potatoes, egg whites, and beans are enzyme-inhibiting.
“Anti-nutrients are natural or synthetic compounds found in a variety of foods − especially grains, beans, legumes, and nuts − that interfere with the absorption of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients,” says Dr. Josh Axe. “Anti-nutrients can also be found in plant roots, vegetables, leaves and fruits, although these are at much lower levels and usually have benefits as opposed to mostly harmful effects.”
One way to help rid foods of harmful anti-nutrients is to soak and/or sprout them before eating. Soaking and sprouting helps to unlock the nutrients that are bound up by anti-nutrients and makes them more bioavailable to your body when you eat them. Sprouting is especially essential to maximize the digestibility of nuts and legumes.
#4 – Eat More Enzyme-Rich Foods
While all raw foods have enzymes, some havemore enzymes than others. Since it’s nearly impossible in our modern world to eat a raw food diet all the time, incorporating more of the following high-enzyme foods into your daily routine will help give you that extra “kick” of enzymes to really boost your body’s digestion:
- Pineapples: rich in bromelain, an anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer class of enzyme that supports protein digestion
- Avocados: rich in lipase, a nutritive enzyme that supports fat digestion
- Bananas: rich in amylase, which supports carbohydrate digestion, and maltase, which supports sugar digestion
- Apricots: rich in invertase, an enzyme that supports sugar and carbohydrate digestion
- Kiwis: rich in actinidin, a unique enzyme found only in kiwifruit that very effectively breaks down proteins in meat and dairy
#5 – Take a Full-Spectrum Enzyme Supplement
At the end of the day, you can also support your diet with supplemental enzymes. A good, full-spectrum digestive enzyme formula will contain a wide array of digestive enzymes. Some formulas will contain betain HCL (hydrochloric acid) and pepsin as well, which together support optimal levels of stomach acid that works alongside enzymes to process and digest food.
Other key ingredients in a high-quality enzyme supplement include lactase, the enzyme that breaks down milk lactose, as well as all three types of pancreatic enzymes, which include:
- Proteases: help support the breakdown and digestion of proteins
- Lipase: helps support the breakdown and digestion of fats
- Amylase: helps support the breakdown and digestion of starches and carbohydrates
Complementary enzyme co-factor herbs and spices like peppermint, ginger, and amla (gooseberry) are also key features in many high-quality enzyme supplements, as these unique nutrients are known to aid in the digestive process. Medicinal mushrooms like reishi and turkey tail − and especially those that have been fermented to extract even more nutrients compared to their raw form − are also highly-beneficial in supporting maximum enzyme effectiveness and efficiency.
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Dan Quixoté says
Don’t forget #6 – Our gut bacteria needs to be in reasonable shape – not decimated by antibiotics, and not having a population imbalance due to toxins or poor diet choices.
Paul Harding says
Great article Ty! “Sluggishness, fatigue, irritability, and malnourishment are all-too-common characteristics of modern living.” BINGO!!!!!
MODERN LIVING is the key phrase. I consistently see excellent results after sleeping in an EMF free field along with properly mitigating a living area of frequencies known to affect the cell membrane. Good sleep equals good health, it’s the essence of life. Those days of struggling with fatigue, celiac type symptoms, acid reflux, and diarrhea have vanished. Embarrassed to say it happened while eating MacDonald’s for breakfast and lunch. I love life now. Now I know that eating right just puts icing on the cake. If you ignore your environment you are guaranteed to fail. Sorry but it’s true.
( Good sleep equals good health ) ..easy to say ! But how ?
steve clasby says
Paul EMF Free field? How do you set one of those up?
Hello Family; Yes, Thank you Ty, Thank you all. There is a saying, and it feels right to me, ” As within, so without ” What causes imbalance in our bodies ? Maybe it is our thoughts, our words our deeds, our feelings and emotions and maybe our experiences. Meditation helps, but what happens when we come out of our meditations, we are back into the world. When we are at peace within then our world changes, our health changes, our attitude changes and it feels like things fall into place more effortlessly, stress is lessened and happiness and health is returned. The words tell us to ” Be at Peace and Know that I am God “. Love is a way to Peace, ” Love one another is another ” is another to assist us in gaining health and peace. Fear causes chemical changes in our bodies as does anger and hate and frustration and that causes imbalance and indigestion, everything restricts and affects our heart too. Clean out of our bodies these old feelings and Forgive. Just sharing. Good health and Peace to all. Loving Blessings. alan.
Dan Quixoté says
Ha! Thanks, alan. This is why I make sure to read the comments on TTAC. Because “the family” sometimes shares as much information as the author of the article
You’re very right – The inner state is a huge factor in health.
I have a knee that gets cranky when I get cranky. And by the way it’s complaining today, I notice a bad attitude setting in. Time to go spend some quiet time with God.
John Matthews says
Also per the Mayo Clinic if you steam broccoli, cabbage and califlower it enhances the enzymes which help attack cancer cells
Milli Fernandez says
Thanks so much for this helpful article. THANK YOU for helping US keep healthy and consequently happier!!
Not addressing the cumulative effects of wheat: the lab manipulation and then roundup drying before it was know what was happening to the wheat industry. The gut is ruined. The continuing of ANY wheat, even organic which is just regular hybrid wheat grown organically, will not allow a person to get to proper weight. Be very careful with the Ezekiel bread scam. It has vital wheat gluten which is just regular roundup dried wheat using the gluten processed from it to supplement wrong attempts at making bread. Bread is flour (ground wheat), water, yeast, salt. Period. Use organic Heirloom wheat which has no chemical drying and is an unmanipukated wheat strain kept pure.
I’m at such a loss then. Every time I think I’m eating right someone tells me that’s also a sham. I buy Ezekiel bread from Trader Joe’s, is that also bad? I don’t know what to do anymore.
Thanks for the heads up on Ezekiel bread I am going to throw away mine right now. They are killing us with food for profit.
Betty Roy says
Can you help me with foods I should eat after gallbladder removal? I’m 73
Ty Shlackman says
You need to eat a lot of raw fruits and vegetables and strictly limit the consumption of fat. You’ll want to avoid all meat and dairy products and eggs and limit consumption of nuts and seeds. Too much fat produces a major burden on your digestive system and slows down detoxification. Of course avoid processed foods as well.
Yesterday, while waiting for a train, a message came across the T.V. screens alerting people that a new study shows that “obesity does not affect one’s health”and “obesity is not linked to any major illnesses as previously thought.” Incredible! Ty, I appreciate your taking the time to increase health awareness. I feel that I must now spread your articles to combat what is obviously a war against our health.
William Strade says
Two basic items that are body bloaters are refined sugar and salt. Also food combining should be considered. Wrong combinations renders food useless and bloating.
John Matthews says
Eating raw us good also steaming broc, cabbage or califlower enhances the enzymes which in turn attack cancer cells.
Papaya is THE most enzyme-laden food ever, why not mentioned?
Surprised papaya isn’t mentioned in the fruit section..
There is such a mass of information and different alternate treatments for cancer that if I should get cancer I would not know which option to use. Which method to use? Which clinic to go to? Which guru to follow?
TTAC Customer Support says
The best advice we can give you is to consult with one of the doctors/experts that we interviewed in our Global Quest Series. Here is a link to get their information: https://thetruthaboutcancer.com/experts-info-sheet/
Glad to see that the TTAC crew responded to your query, as I am not a professional of any sort.
However, I did want to comment…..
That is the beauty of natural health care—–there are MANY ways to stay well or to heal if you do become overwhelmed by a pathogen. There are many clinics and experts to assist. There is a very wide variety of protocols, clinics and practitioners that support the body’s innate healing ability, that have successfully guided people on their personal journey back to good health.
That is something to always remember. So, no need to fear that you will pick the wrong clinic / wrong protocol / wrong guru etc., as long as you have thoroughly educated yourself on the topic. (and as long as you stay away from ‘dis-ease’ care industrial complex!!)
Always get solid, dependable knowledge from organizations such as TTAC. And as in any new endeavor, be sure you do not ‘go it alone’! Dealing with something as serious as cancer is one of the times you need an experienced guide.
Lola Linfitt says
I am so sick of trying to order Epizymes and have your card don’t match or my card number is not right and now I can’t cancel my order I Am so disgusted that I will never order from this place again or is this just a farce?
TTAC Customer Support says
We are sorry to hear you are having an issue. Please reach out to Epigenetic Labs customer support team for help with this issue: https://support.epigeneticlabs.com/submit_ticket