Role of Enzymes
Enzymes... The property of being long-lived
Enzymes are the "labor force" that build-up our body just like construction workers are the labor force that builds our house. You may have all the necessary building materials and lumber, but to build a house we need workers, which represent the vital life element. Similarly, we may have all the nutrients vitamins, proteins, minerals, etc., for our body, but we still need the enzymes the life element to keep the body alive and healthy.
What are enzymes? Enzymes are substances which make life possible. They are needed for every chemical reaction that occurs in our body. Without enzymes, no activity at all would take place.
"Enzymes may be the key factor in preventing chronic disease and extending the human lifespan." "Neither vitamins, minerals nor hormones can do any work -- without enzymes." Enzymes are, therefore, justified as a supplemental dietary substance which need is parallel with mineral, vitamin and all other supportive therapies. Enzymes rule over all other nutrients. Enzymes are responsible for nearly every facet of life and health and far outweigh the importance of every other nutrient.
An enzyme deficiency must be carefully considered as a possible precursor of bodily imbalance and consequent disease symptoms. Vitamins are required as coenzymes to work with enzymes in every chemical reaction in every cell of the body. Without mineral extracted from food by enzymes, vitamins would be unable to perform their function. Enzymes use minerals to create an even balance of dissolved solids both inside and outside the cells, thus equalizing both internal and external pressures which we call osmotic equilibrium. Enzymes help extract minerals from food. Enzymes transform minerals into an alkaline detoxifying agency which combines with acid cellular wastes and toxic settlements within the body thus neutralizing them and preparing them for elimination.
Enzymes aid in transforming proteins into amino acids. Protein does not perform its function unless broken down into amino acids. Amino acids can be considered as an enzyme carrier whose function is to transport enzymes to various functions in the body. Enzymes are primarily proteins, yet enzymes need amino acids for their normal function. Hormones are primarily proteins which require interaction with enzymes to regulate bodily processes. Enzymes are found in all living cells including raw foods or those that are cooked at a temperature lower than 116 degrees Fahrenheit. Enzymes begin to perish when the temperature increases beyond 116 degrees. The degree of enzyme destruction is a function of time and temperature. Once enzymes have completed their appointed task they are destroyed.
For life to continue, you must have a constant enzyme supply which requires continual replacement of enzymes. Enzymes cannot function properly without the presence of other substances which are known as coenzymes. Coenzymes are minerals, vitamins and proteins. Each body cell has in excess of 100000 enzyme particles necessary for metabolic processes. Enzymes are needed to help control all mental and physical functions. Lipase is an enzyme that aids the body in breaking down fats and removing fats from storage. Without this enzyme, fat stagnates and accumulates not only in the obvious places, but in the arteries. The fats in the arteries contribute to cholesterol and atherosclerosis. Thus enzymes really are essential to life. As we age, the reduced ability of our body to produce the required amounts of enzymes from their limited sources in foods makes us more vulnerable to illness and disease.
To begin with, if the body is overburdened to supply many enzymes to the saliva, gastric juice, pancreatic juice and intestinal juice, then it must curtail the production of enzymes for other purposes. If this occurs, then how can the body also make enough enzymes to run the brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, muscles and other organs and tissues? This "stealing" of enzymes from other parts of the body to service the digestive tract sets up a competition for enzymes among the various organ systems and tissues of the body. The resulting metabolic dislocations may be the direct cause of cancer, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and many other chronic incurable diseases. This state of enzyme deficiency stress exists in the majority of persons on the civilized, enzyme-free diet.
Enzymes are much more than catalysts. Catalysts are only inert substances. They possess none of the life energy we find in enzymes. For instance, enzymes give off a kind of radiation when they work. This is not true of catalysts. In addition, although enzymes contain proteins and some contain vitamins the activity factor in enzymes has never been synthesized. Moreover, there is no combination of proteins or any combination of amino acids or any other substance which will give enzyme activity. There are proteins present in enzymes. However, they serve only as carriers of the enzyme activity factors.
Where do the enzymes in our bodies come from? It seems that we inherit a certain enzyme potential at birth. This limited supply of activity factors or life force must last us a lifetime. It's just as if you inherited a certain amount of money. If the movement is all one way all spending and no income you will run out of money. Likewise, the faster you use up your supply of enzyme activity, the quicker you will run out. Experiments at various universities have shown that, regardless of the species, the faster the metabolic rate, the shorter the lifespan. Other things being equal, you live as long as your body has enzyme activity factors to make enzymes from. When it gets to the point that you can't make certain enzymes, then your life ends.
What people do which causes them to waste their limited enzyme supply? Just about every single person eats a diet of mainly cooked foods. Keep in mind that whenever a food is boiled at 212 degrees, the enzymes in it are 100% destroyed. If enzymes were in the food we eat, they would do some or even a considerable part of the work of digestion by themselves. However, when you eat cooked, enzyme-free food, this forces the body itself to make the enzymes needed for digestion. This depletes the body's limited enzyme capacity.
How serious is this strain on our enzyme "Deposit" caused by diets of mostly cooked food?
It's one of the paramount causes of premature aging and early death. It's the underlying cause of almost all degenerative disease. To begin with, if the body is overburdened to supply many enzymes to the saliva, gastric juice, pancreatic juice and intestinal juice, then it must curtail the production of enzymes for other purposes. If this occurs, then how can the body also make enough enzymes to run the brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, muscles and other organs and tissues? This "stealing" of enzymes from other parts of the body to service the digestive tract sets up a competition for enzymes among the various organ systems and tissues of the body. The resulting metabolic dislocations may be the direct cause of cancer, coronary heart disease, diabetes, and many other chronic incurable diseases. This state of enzyme deficiency stress exists in the majority of persons on the civilized enzyme-free diet.
What evidence is there that human beings suffer from food enzyme deficiency? Human beings have the lowest levels of starch digesting enzymes in their blood of any creature. We also have the highest level of these enzymes in the urine, meaning that they are being used up faster. These low enzyme levels are not due to a peculiarity of our species. Instead, they are due to the large amounts of cooked starch we eat. Animals on cooked diets are much heavier than their counterparts on raw diets. Cooked, enzyme-free diets contribute to a pathological over-enlargement of the pituitary gland, which regulates the other glands. Almost 100% of the people over 50 dying from accidental causes were found to have defective pituitary glands. Food enzyme deficiency is the cause of the exaggerated maturation of today's children and teenagers. Enzyme-deficient diets produce a much more rapid maturation than usual. It is also an important cause of overweight in many children and adults.
Also, we know that decreased enzyme levels are found in a number of chronic ailments, such as allergies, skin disease, and even serious diseases like diabetes and cancer. You would have noticed that farmers use cooked potatoes to fatten pigs for market. They’ve found that pigs on cooked potatoes fatten faster and more economically than pigs on raw potatoes. This evidence shows the great difference between cooked calories and raw calories. Indeed, it was impossible to get people fat on raw foods, regardless of the calorie intake.
Evidence shows that the human pancreas is one of the heaviest in the animal kingdom, when you adjust for total body weight. This over enlargement of the human pancreas is just as dangerous probably even more so than an over enlargement of the heart, the thyroid and so on. The overproduction of enzymes in humans is a pathological adaptation to a diet of enzyme-free foods. The pancreas is not the only part of the body that over secretes enzymes when the diet is cooked. In addition, there are the human salivary glands, which produce enzymes to a degree never found in wild animals on their natural foods. The enzymes in saliva will only attack a piece of starch once it is cooked. Therefore, we see that the body will channel some of its limited enzyme producing capacity into saliva only if it has to.
How do we know that people would benefit from additional enzyme intake? As a result of therapeutic fasting or when a person fasts, there is an immediate halt to the production of digestive enzymes. The enzymes in saliva, gastric juice and pancreatic juice dwindle and become scarce. During fasting, the body's enzymes are free to work on repairing and removing diseased tissues. Civilized people eat such large quantities of cooked foods that their enzyme systems are kept busy digesting food. As a result, the body lacks the enzymes needed to maintain the tissues in good health. Most people who fast go through what is called a healing crisis. The patients may feel nausea, vomiting and dizziness. What's happening is that the enzymes are working to change the unhealthy structure of the body. The enzymes attack pathological tissues and break down undigested and unprocessed substances; and these then get thrown off through the bowels, through vomiting, or via the skin.
When people get enzymes from food, aren't they destroyed by stomach acid and therefore of little or no value? This is not true. Although most nutritionists claim that enzymes in food are destroyed in the stomach, they overlook two important facts. First of all, when you eat food, acid secretion is minimal for at least thirty minutes. As the food goes down the esophagus, it drops into the top portion of the stomach. This is called the cardiac section, since it's closer to the heart. The rest of the stomach remains flat and closed while the cardiac section opens up to accommodate the food. During the time the food sits in the upper section, little acid or enzymes are secreted by the body. The enzymes in the food itself go about digesting the food. The more of this self-digestion that occurs, the less work the body has to do later. When this 30 to 45 minute period is over, the bottom section of the stomach opens up and the body starts secreting acid and enzymes. Even at this point, the food enzymes are not inactivated until the acid level becomes prohibitive. You see, food enzymes can tolerate chemical environments many times more acid than neutral.
If not all of us, eat lots of cooked foods every day. Can we make up for this enzyme loss by eating raw foods in addition? No. Cooked foods cause such a large drain on our enzyme supply that you can't make it up by eating raw foods. In addition, vegetables and fruits are not concentrated sources of enzymes. When produce ripens, enzymes are present to do the ripening. However, once the ripening is finished, some of the enzymes leave and go back into the stem and seeds. For example, when companies want to get enzymes from papaya, a tropical fruit, they use the juice of unripe papaya. The ripe papaya itself has no great concentration of enzymes.
What are the best sources of enzymes and what are the enzyme inhibitors? Bananas, avocados and mangos are good sources. In general, foods having higher calorie content are richer in enzymes. There are some foods, seeds and nuts that contain what are called enzyme inhibitors. These enzyme inhibitors are present for the protection of the seed. Nature doesn't want the seed to germinate prematurely and lose its life. It wants to make sure that the seed is present in soil with sufficient moisture to grow and continue the species. Therefore, when you eat raw seeds or raw nuts, you are swallowing enzyme inhibitors which will neutralize some of the enzymes your body produces. In fact, eating foods with enzyme inhibitors causes a swelling of the pancreas.
All nuts and seeds contain these inhibitors. Raw peanuts, for example, contain an especially large amount. Raw wheat germ is also one of the worst offenders. In addition, all peas, beans and lentils contain some. Potatoes, which are seeds, have enzyme inhibitors. In eggs, which are also seeds, the inhibitor is contained mainly in the egg white.
As a general rule, enzyme inhibitors are confined to the seed portions of food. For instance, the eyes of potatoes. The inhibitors are not present in the fleshy portions of fruits or in the leaves and stems of vegetables. There are two ways to destroy enzyme inhibitors. The first is cooking however, this also destroys the enzymes. The second way, which is preferable, is sprouting. This destroys the enzyme inhibitors and also increases the enzyme content from a factor of three to six.