Digestive enzymes play a crucial role in breaking down the food we consume and aiding in the digestion process. These enzymes are produced by various organs in our body, including the salivary glands, gastric glands in the stomach, secretory cells (islets) in the pancreas, and secretory glands in the small intestine. They help break down complex molecules into simpler forms that can be absorbed and utilized by the body.

Digestive enzymes are specialized proteins that act as catalysts to speed up the chemical reactions involved in the breakdown of food. Each enzyme is specific to a particular molecule type, such as carbohydrates, proteins, or fats.

In addition, to helping food digestion, they function to maintain the survival of our body’s cells.

The three main types of digestive enzymes are amylases, proteases, and lipases.



Amylases are responsible for breaking down carbohydrates into simple sugars like glucose. They are found in saliva, where the process of carbohydrate digestion begins. Once food reaches the stomach, amylases become inactive due to the acidic environment. However, they are reactivated in the small intestine by the pancreatic amylase.


Proteases, as the name suggests, are enzymes that break down proteins. They are produced in the stomach as pepsinogen, an inactive form, which is activated by stomach acid and converted into pepsin. Pepsin breaks down proteins into smaller peptides. In the small intestine, pancreatic proteases continue the process of protein digestion, breaking the peptides into individual amino acids that can be absorbed into the bloodstream.


Lipases are enzymes that break down fats or lipids. They are produced in the pancreas and are released into the small intestine. Lipases break down complex fats into smaller molecules called fatty acids and glycerol. These products can then be absorbed through the intestinal wall and utilized by the body for energy or other functions.


The digestion process starts in the mouth, where amylases begin breaking down carbohydrates while we chew our food. As the food travels down the esophagus and reaches the stomach, proteases and lipases start working. In the stomach, proteases break down proteins, and lipases initiate the breakdown of fats.

The partially digested food then moves into the small intestine, where the majority of digestion and nutrient absorption occurs. Here, pancreatic enzymes, including amylases, proteases, and lipases, are released to further break down carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. The small intestine also produces additional enzymes, such as maltase, sucrase, and lactase, to assist in the digestion of specific sugars.

Once the food is broken down into its simplest form, the nutrients are absorbed through the intestinal wall into the bloodstream. The body then utilizes these nutrients for energy, growth, and maintenance of various bodily functions.

In some cases, individuals may have insufficient production of certain digestive enzymes, leading to digestive problems. For instance, lactose intolerance occurs when the body lacks sufficient lactase to break down lactose. In such cases, enzyme supplements can be taken to aid in digestion and alleviate discomfort.

Are you having digestive problems? Are you experiencing a leaky gut, (Leaky Gut Syndrome, LGS)? Research has found that digestive enzymes can improve digestion.

In addition, studies show they can decrease inflammation, ease arthritis, and may reduce IBS symptoms.

At our Tierra Wellness Center, we have digestive enzymes for you. Let’s chat, discuss your digestive problem, and set up the best way to heal and make you feel great again.

The Tierra Wellness Center

Personalized programs the natural way that will radically improve your health and inner vitality.


Address: 196 Rt. 206, 2nd floor
Flanders, New Jersey 07836

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Tel: 973-620-8811

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