Digestive enzymes are the chemicals that break down and digest food in the gastrointestinal tract. If they fail to do their task, or if there are insufficient enzymes in the gut, it is likely to cause chronic constipation. Eating a proper diet is one of the most natural ways to get constipation relief.
There are four key enzymes which are easy to recall by using the acronym C.L.A.P.:
- Cellulase – breaks down fiber
- Lipase – breaks down fat lipids
- Amylase – breaks down carbohydrates
- Protease – breaks down proteins
Enzymes are easy to spot in the lexicon of health terminology as they all end in “-ase.”
One of the causes of chronic constipation is an incomplete digestion of food. In a perfectly healthy body, the food is digested before it reaches the colon. Digestion starts as saliva and chewing begin to break down food. Stomach acids and enzymes work on the food in the stomach before it reaches the colon.
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If food is not properly digested at that stage it can cause problems that may require constipation relief. Poor digestion means that the nutrients and vitamins are not released into the blood stream and made available to the cells.
If you think of the colon as a sewer, you can imagine that a buildup of undigested food caused by chronic constipation is an undesirable and unhealthy state. The toxic waste needs to be eliminated as quickly as possible, with a constipation relief supplement if necessary.
Even those who have regular bowel movements may have hidden problems if their enzymes are not working effectively. An unhealthy diet of fried foods high in starch, salt, fat and sugar can leave a deposit of slime on the inner walls of the colon if not properly digested by enzyme activity first. This coating may reduce the ability of the colon to absorb any remaining nutrients and can lead to a narrowing of the colon. This can hinder the peristaltic muscle movement that normally propels food through the digestive tract, leading to an ongoing need for constipation relief.
Causes of Constipation
When food is cooked, natural enzymes are destroyed. We need to include some raw fruit and vegetables in the diet to boost enzyme levels and reduce chronic constipation problems requiring constipation relief.
Overeating and living a stressful life are further problems hindering the digestive process. Age also means we produce less digestive enzymes and may need some extra help by taking a digestive enzyme supplement.
By understanding how enzymes work, it is easier to make the changes necessary in our diet and lifestyle to prevent chronic constipation and avoid the need for constipation relief.