What are Enzymes?
Enzymes are substances that act as a catalyst for chemical reactions in the body. Typically made of protein, enzymes facilitate reactions that would otherwise require a significant increase in temperature to occur, such as the digestion of carbohydrates requiring a much higher temperature than can be safely sustained in the human body. Some enzymes are produced by the body while others are consumed in the form of certain raw foods.

What are the health benefits of Enzymes?
Enzymes serve a variety of purposes, and each identified enzyme is associated with a very specific chemical reaction in the body. The most prominent functions of enzymes include the digestion of carbohydrates, fats, or proteins, and fermentation processes used for making bread and beer. As catalysts, enzymes are never consumed as energy in the chemical reaction.

What are the different functions of Enzymes?
There are many different categories of enzymes that serve many different functions. Proteases are a type of enzyme that break down proteins and thus are used to aid digestion and as meat tenderizers. Lipases are a type of enzyme that breaks down fats and are similarly used to aid digestion. Amylases are used for aiding digestion as well, and are used to digest carbohydrates. The pancreas secretes enzymes in its pancreatic juice for the digestion processes that take place in the small intestine. Other enzymes, like zymase, are found in yeast cells and are used to brew beer.

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This entry was posted in Natural Health Dictionary, Supplements, Vitamins and Nutrients.