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What are these enzymes, exactly. Enzymes are proteins that facilitate specific chemical reactions. Digestive enzymes facilitate the chemical breakdown of food into smaller, absorbable components. Enzymes called amylases break down starches into sugar molecules; proteases break down proteins into amino acids; and lipases break down fat into its component parts. We eat food, but our digestive system doesn't absorb food, it absorbs nutrients. Food has to be broken down from things like steak and broccoli into its nutrient pieces: amino acids (from proteins), fatty acids and cholesterol (from fats), and simple sugars (from carbohydrates), as well as vitamins, minerals, and a variety of other plant and animal compounds. Digestive enzymes, primarily produced in the pancreas and small intestine, break down our food into nutrients so that our bodies can absorb them. If we don't have enough digestive enzymes, we can't break down our food-which means even though we're eating well, we aren't absorbing all that good nutrition. What Causes My Digestive Enzymes to Stop Working Correctly in My Body. Disease may cause your digestive enzyme levels to be low. Even in the absence of any obvious disease, things in your digestive track may not be working properly. Contributors to this discomfort include low-grade inflammation, low stomach acid, ageing of the digestive track, and chronic stress.

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