Answer: There are some basic things you should know about taking pancreatic enzymes:
Before pancreatic enzymes can perform their magic on food (and foreign proteins in the body), food must be broken down (food is broken down by being chewed and, after being swollowed and arriving in the stomach, broken down further by stomach acid).
Then, as your food leaves your stomach and passes into your small intestine, your pancreas secretes pancreatic enzymes to digest the food (as the pancreatic enzymes digest your food, nutrients in the food are released and absorbed into your bloodstream where they are used to repair and build new cells).
However, no amount of pancreatic enzymes can digest food that has not first been prepared for pancreatic digestion by chewing and stomach acid. (Note: Many of us can get away with swallowing our food in large pieces due to having enough stomach acid to do the chewing job as well as the stomach acid job, but once we develop a disease it means our stomach acid is not able to do this any longer and we need help in this area as much as we need pancreatic enzymes.)
Always keep in mind that particles of food entering the small intestine must be smaller than the size of a grain of salt in order for the pancreatic enzymes to be able to digest them. This is why, when trying to reverse disease, I suggest using a blender for the first 30 days.
I recommend that you put nothing in your mouth that has not been fully broken down with a blender and to mix each mouthful you put into your mouth with saliva before swallowing (carbohydrates need the enzymes in saliva to start their digestion). It takes a lot less stomach acid to prepare the food for the small intestine when the food arrives in the stomach blended as opposed to food that has not been chewed thoroughly.
Finally, to help your stomach acid and your pancreatic enzymes perform their jobs to the best of their ability, do not dilute your stomach acid or interfere with the action of your pancreatic enzymes by drinking any kind of liquid when you eat or for two hours after eating (drink liquid at least one half hour before eating). (Keep a log, chances are you will feel much better very quickly when you follow these suggestions.)
Question: "How many pancreatic enzymes should I take with each meal?" and/or, "How many pancreatic enzymes will it take to get full digestion?"
Answer: Here is my step by step system that will allow you to find out how many enzymes you need at this point of time in your life (the time of year and the anount of stress in your life at the moment will have an effect on what you need):
Take one 325 mg pancreatic enzyme tablet (ideally 20-30 minutes prior to your meal). If you are using our 325 mg pancreatic enzymes you have some latitude on the timing in taking the tablet (explained below).
Our 325 mg pancreatic enzyme tablet is enteric coated and will survive the stomach acid while capsules of pancreatic enzymes have two main disadvantages:
First: Enzymes are alkalizing, which means if they are in your stomach at the same time as food, stomach acid will be screted and the two will cancel each other. So, if you are using capsules you MUST take them 25 to 30 minutes prior to eating in order for them to pass through the stomach and be in the small intestine when the food arrives.
Second: Some people seem to be more sensitive than others and notice a "warm or burning" sensation in their stomach when consuming the capsules because the capsules begin to dissolve in the stomach.
Here is the recommended process for discovering how many pancreatic enzymes to take:
Day two and beyond, add one more tablets or capsules with each meal until, when you have a bowel movement, you notice that your anus burns. This tells you that you have consumed more enzymes than your body currently requires.
Adjust the amount down by one tablet or capsule with each meal and you should be good for a while.
If your stress is increasing you may need more.
As you reduce stress (by learning how to release the stress) you will again notice your anus burning during a bowel movement and you will need to reduce the enzymes.
Increase the amount of tablets or capsules each day until your body tells you that you are taking too many, then reduce a little.
- Day one, if you eat three meals, take 1 tablet or capsule with each meal; 3 (three) total
- Day five, you will be consuming five (5) tablets or capsules, three times, or 15 (fifteen), total
- Day ten, you will be consuming ten (10) tablets or capsules, three times or 30 (thirty), total