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Re: Larry, Re: Celiac disease and depression McPac

Posted by Larry Hoover on June 30, 2003, at 6:30:53

In reply to Larry, Re: Celiac disease and depression, posted by McPac on June 30, 2003, at 2:23:54

> Lar, my question is at the END of this article.

> ******Lar, re: the following statement from the article, what is the NAME of the specific enzyme that one could take to alleviate this enzyne deficiency? "The prior two conditions of enzyme deficiency and intestinal permeability are abundantly found when sought, and it is these features which, we suspect, dominate the segment of the population which is chronically depressed".

The enzyme deficiencies mentioned are quite possibly the result of intestinal injury from gluten/casein exposure, rather than a causative factor. Simply put, celiac causes malnutrition, and malnutrition causes poor enzyme production.

Alternatively, poor enzyme production may have a genetic component, which is compounded by the coexistence of gluten or casein sensitivity.

In general terms, enzymes are proteins. Moreover, they have exquisitely defined three-dimensional structure, which is why they work. The acid in the stomach denatures the vast majority of enzymes (destroys their three-dimensional structure) and/or breaks them to pieces (digestion). Your stomach secretes enzymes which not only survive the high-acid environment, they need it to develop their own functional three-dimensional structure. Pepsin, an enzyme that breaks proteins into smaller pieces (including free amino acids), is an example. Some absorption of nutrients occurs here, but not much, relatively speaking.

Celiac is an intestinal disorder. The crudely digested mass in the stomach passes into the intestine and the acid is neutralized. Then, other enzymes that can't survive the acid are released into the gut, and digestion proceeds, finally producing the majority of the free nutrients that can be absorbed into your blood.

Celiac sprue damages the intestinal wall, where the uptake of nutrients occurs. Nutrients that require transport pumps for efficient uptake just don't get absorbed well. Even those that don't need pumps for uptake may be inhibited, due to inflammatory processes.

Over time, your body runs out of the supplies it needs to make the digestive enzymes themselves. At the same time, the rest of the body is starving for some nutrients (e.g. vitamin B-12). That's where the psych symptoms arise.

So, back to the enzyme question. Oral enzymes are just so much food, as far as your stomach is concerned. If they can be denatured, they will be. If they can be digested, they will be. (Aside: Raw foods advocates, who think that cooking destroys enzymes, ignore the effect of their own stomachs on those same enzymes. I think your stomach does more to those enzymes than cooking can ever do.)

Despite what I just said, there are oral enzymes that help your digestion. There are numerous commercial products available. Tons of different products. I have no clear idea which ones work, and which ones end up being expensive protein food. That said, I've had good results when I've tried using such a product.

One that I use regularly is bromelain, which is an enzyme derived from pineapple. It is a proteolytic (protein-digesting) enzyme, and it survives the stomach. In fact, it is absorbed intact into the blood. There, it has anti-inflammatory and immune-regulating properties.

There are also products with actual pepsin, and other enzymes (e.g. lipase, a fat-digesting enzyme), normally secreted by a healthy gut. They're fairly expensive, but if they overcome the disturbance in digestion and uptake of nutrients, they're worth every penny.

I'm going to be taking an intensive look at the topic of exorphins. I may be on the cusp of going on a gluten/casein exclusion diet after all.

Lar

 

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