Your body produces multiple digestive enzymes to help break down the foods we eat, so that we can benefit from the nutrients they provide.
You can also get natural digestive enzymes by eating fruits, vegetables and some other foods as part of a healthy balanced diet.
Digestive enzyme supplements
If you feel like you need a little extra help and support with your digestion, then it may be worth taking an additional digestive enzyme supplement.
Digestive enzyme supplements are dietary supplements which contain one or more of the digestive enzymes which are released naturally into your gut by the digestive system. They are usually available to take as capsules or tablets.
The different types of digestive enzyme supplements
Some digestive enzyme supplements contain one digestive enzyme to target a specific nutrient, whereas others contain a combination of different ones.
The lactase enzyme contributes to breaking down lactose, which is present in milk and other dairy products.
Being lactose intolerant or having a sensitivity to lactose is one of the most common digestive issues and is thought to affect up to 75% of the world’s population.
Digestive enzymes are proteins which help to break down the food that we eat. They help to speed up the chemical reactions within the body, which turn the nutrients from food into substances which our digestive tracts can absorb.
The digestive enzymes in your body start to work as soon as you eat food. The length of time they take to work can vary for everyone and this is similar for digestive enzyme supplements.
Organs, including the gallbladder and liver, produce and release digestive enzymes. As well as this, the saliva has digestive enzymes in it and cells on the surface of your intestines store them too.
Most of your digestive enzymes are produced in the pancreas and these are known as pancreatic enzymes.
The digestive enzyme supplements available at Holland & Barrett are subject to stringent controls and are of the highest quality.
Make sure that you read the instructions on the packaging and follow the correct dosage in order to take them safely.
If you are currently on medication or under medical supervision, then please consult with your doctor before taking a dietary supplement.
There are lots of different types of digestive enzymes, all of which have slightly different functions and work to break down different nutrients in our foods.
Six of the most significant types are amylase enzyme, maltase, lactase, lipase enzyme, protease and sucrase.