This guide outlines the steps and processes to take in reading product labels, matching enzymes to food types, and what to look for in a digestive enzyme product.

Enzymes work very well to supplement a diet and thus make the diet more effective than it would be otherwise. Many diets are based on certain foods not being well-digested to begin with so enzymes are a natural solution. Enzymes work very well on food and natural food chemicals. The breakdown of artificially produced chemicals or added chemicals is somewhat limited at this time. These non-good ingredients usually do not provide nutrition anyway, may aggravate a sensitive system, and may hamper health in the long run. Enzymes are not able to convert non-nutritious compounds into healthful nutrients. Providing nutritious raw materials is necessary. Too, enzymes may enhance the absorption and utilization of any supplements or medications take, making them more effective.

In the case of Bio88+ (Plus), all the above is true. Feel free to contact the author by email for additional information.

* Why are you considering enzymes?
* What types of enzymes are in the product?
* Look closely at the amount of activity of the enzymes
* Compare pricing – Calculating cost comparisons
* What other stuff is in the product besides enzymes?
* Research the product and manufacturer
* Understanding enzyme names and activity

Part 1. Why are you considering enzymes?

Select an enzyme product based on the results you want to achieve. Think about the food groups you want the enzymes to break down, and then pick a product that contains the proper enzymes. Products are usually a mixture of enzymes, not just one type. You may need to choose more than one product to cover all the foods you need to break down. Sometimes you may have another goal besides food breakdown. Examples are using a high protease enzyme product to take between meals for inflammation, gut healing, and blood cleansing, or one with a high level of cellulase to help with yeast overgrowth.

Skip right through all the advertising and marketing fluff. Note what end results you want to see and use that to make your decision. You can get some helpful information from a company but be sure to compare this information with other sources as well.

Part 2. What types of enzymes are in the product?

Source of enzymes
All digestive enzymes come from two living sources: plants or animals. The plant group includes both those enzymes derived from plant sources (pineapple, papaya, kiwi) and microbial (fungal) sources. In general, plant enzymes are preferable when possible. They offer several advantages over enzymes from animal sources. Plant and microbial enzymes are much more effective in the pH and temperature ranges of the body.

Our pancreas, when working properly, secretes a number of enzymes to digest food as it enters the small intestine. But as we age, or in some disease states, this enzyme secretion may not be adequate to completely digest the food we eat. This can result in pain, cramping, excessive gas, certain food intolerances, and inflammation. Pancreatic enzymes are available by prescription (Creon, Viokase) or over the counter. However, pancreatic enzymes are not stable to the acid conditions found in the stomach, so a good portion of them may be destroyed unless the preparation is treated in such a way, like being enterically coated, so that the enzymes will not be released until they arrive in the small intestine.

Plant and microbial enzymes, however, are stable in acidic conditions. They help digest the cooked and raw foods in the higher pH of the upper part of the stomach, the acidic lower part of the stomach as well as in the alkaline intestines. Digestion in the upper stomach actually mimics the natural process of eating raw foods, which contain some amount of the enzymes needed to break down the food itself. The additional ‘pre-digestion’ provided by plant and microbial enzymes leaves the pancreas to provide the ‘finishing touches’ to the digestive process in a less stressful manner. The intestinal tract will be better able to absorb and assimilate the nutrients and vitamins in the meal.

Is an all in one enzyme product better or a speciality product with only a few different types of enzymes? Actually, the “all-in-one” product is probably better if? If it meets the quality and scope of Bio88+ (Plus). Read on and learn about this product here and on its web site, as well as all the other competing products available. But your need may be of a narrower scope and so you would not need the quality nor expense of such an all-in-one product!