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Bloating, gas and indigestion may be signs of enzyme deficiency

A voluptuary under the horrors of digestion
A voluptuary under the horrors of digestion
Caricature by James Gillray, (1757–1815)

As you age, reduced digestion can become a greater issue and unfortunately, eating well doesn't always solve the problem.

Proper digestion and health issues

To get the nutrients it needs to thrive, your body has to properly digest and absorb the nutrients from your food. When you eat, your body produces digestive enzymes that break down the food allowing nutrients to be absorbed into your body through the small intestine. When you are lacking enzymes, your body doesn't digest properly, resulting in the mal-absorption of the nutrients it needs which can lead to digestive and other general health problems.

Raw fruits and vegetables

Due to the quantity of processed foods in the Standard American Diet, it's unlikely that the average person produces enough digestive enzymes to facilitate optimum digestion. It is believed that enzymes found in raw fruits and vegetables, when cooked or processed, become enzyme deficient; conversely, some nutrients get absorbed better in a cooked vegetable. To increase your chance of getting the nutrients that are better absorbed in each way, include both raw and cooked fruit and vegetables in your diet.

Digestive enzyme supplement

Many nutritionists recommend that everyone over the age of thirty five take a daily digestive enzyme supplement. Papaya, which offers numerous health benefits, is a good source for treating many digestive disorders and is excellent for improving poor digestion; consider adding a chewable papaya digestive enzyme to your diet.

When to consult your doctor

Most adults have suffered with one or more digestive ailments from time to time, but many resolve on their own. When gas and gas pains interfere with your daily activities, it may be an indication of something serious. Call your doctor if your symptoms persist or you notice:

  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Weight loss
  • Abdominal or rectal pain
  • Persistent heartburn
  • Blood in stools
  • Fever

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Next article: 10 common strategies to ease the discomfort of bloating, gas, indigestion and flatulence.


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