What are enzymes? We introduce their characteristics and three tips for taking them effectively!


I'm Narita, a staff member of "Kome Dreaming ~GIFT & CRAFTMita~".

In recent years, with the rise in epidemics and the number of people working from home, I think there has been increased interest in health in the world.

I used to go to the office until a few years ago, but now I often work from home.

During work hours, I sit in a chair at home facing my computer, and some days I only walk a few hundred steps...

I was worried about whether my body would be okay if I continued like this, so I started doing strength training at home and researching nutrition.

This time, I'll focus on enzymes and introduce their characteristics as well as three tips for taking enzymes effectively!

1. What are enzymes?


Enzymes are primarily composed of proteins and are used in chemical reactions such as food digestion, absorption, and metabolism, which are necessary for living organisms such as humans, plants, and animals to function.


It is said that there are approximately 5,000 different types of enzymes in the human body, each of which specializes in only one function.

For example, enzymes that break down proteins cannot break down lipids or starches; other enzymes are needed to break down lipids and starches.


Enzymes can be broadly divided into "digestive enzymes" and "metabolic enzymes" that exist within the body, and "food enzymes" that exist outside the body.


digestive enzyme

There are three types of digestive enzymes that break down the three major nutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) contained in food so that they can be absorbed through the intestinal wall.


・Protease that breaks down proteins

Amylase, which breaks down starch

・Lipase that breaks down lipids


Metabolic enzymes

It is the source of vital activities, such as converting nutrients absorbed through the intestinal wall into energy, excreting harmful substances and waste products, promoting metabolism and blood circulation, and immune response.


As we age, the amount of enzymes decreases, so even if we continue to eat the same diet as when we were younger, we may become more susceptible to illness and accelerate aging.


Food Enzymes

Found in raw fruits, vegetables and fermented foods, it helps with blood circulation and digestion.


The key points are that "digestive enzymes" and "food enzymes" aid in digestion, while metabolic enzymes are the source of life activities and help with health and beauty !


*Reference: " NPO Japan Enzyme Nutrition Association "

2. Characteristics of enzymes


Heat sensitive

Most enzymes are composed primarily of proteins.

Heating causes the structure to change and the enzyme loses its function.


The amount of enzymes produced in the body each day is constant.

The number of enzymes in the body is constant, with 100 enzymes being distributed between digestive enzymes and metabolic enzymes.

A healthy person's digestive enzymes are approximately 20% and metabolic enzymes are approximately 80%.

On the other hand, unhealthy people have a distribution of 80% digestive enzymes and 20% metabolic enzymes, which means that there is less distribution to metabolic enzymes, and as a result, they are more likely to suffer adverse effects on their bodies.


If you eat foods that are hard to digest or eat large amounts of them, the allocation of digestive enzymes will increase and metabolic enzymes will decrease.


The important thing is to consume food enzymes from vegetables, etc., to help with digestion, reducing the proportion of digestive enzymes in the body and increasing the proportion of metabolic enzymes !


*Reference: " Japan Foundation for Longevity and Health "

3. Three tips for taking enzymes effectively


① Natural and fresh, not heated

Foods that contain enzymes are "living" foods, so they are grown in natural environments without the use of pesticides, and the fresher they are, the more enzymes they contain.

Also, any enzymes present will be completely destroyed if you heat it at 60-80°C for 30 minutes, so it is recommended to eat it without heating it as much as possible.


② Eat foods that are rich in enzymes

Vegetables: radish, turnip, yam, carrot, onion

Radishes and turnips contain a lot of digestive enzymes, which help regulate the stomach and intestines.

Yamaimo is rich in minerals and digestive enzymes, which help with digestion and absorption.


Fruits: papaya, pineapple, pear, fig

Papayas, pineapples, and pears contain enzymes that break down protein into amino acids.

Figs are also rich in minerals and digestive enzymes.


Fermented foods: natto, miso, kimchi, pickled vegetables, amazake

In fermented foods, the nutrients are broken down by microorganisms during the fermentation process, which reduces the burden of decomposition in the body and prevents the consumption of digestive and metabolic enzymes.

In addition, the lactic acid bacteria contained in fermented foods help increase the number of good bacteria, so they can also help alleviate ailments such as constipation, rough skin, and mood swings caused by poor intestinal environment.


Personally, I recommend mixing amazake with green juice, as it has no bitterness and is packed with nutrients!!


3) Improving lifestyle habits

Chew your food thoroughly:

Saliva contains an enzyme called amylase that breaks down starch.

Chewing more will increase saliva production, helping to break down food more thoroughly.

Additionally, chewing food into small pieces makes it easier for the body to break it down and absorb it.


Warm the body:

It is said that if your body temperature drops by 0.5℃, your immune system will weaken by 35%.

Enzymes work best at temperatures between 37°C and 40°C, so keeping your body temperature warm will help your enzymes work better and boost your immunity.


We recommend taking long soaks in lukewarm water or foot baths, getting into the habit of exercising, and drinking lukewarm water or hot green juice when you wake up in the morning.


Get enough quality sleep:

While you sleep, metabolic enzymes help recover and repair tired areas, helping you feel less tired.

However, if you eat right before going to bed, your digestive system will continue to work while you sleep.


The key to improving the quality of your sleep is to finish dinner at least three hours before going to bed and take a bath one to two hours before.


Avoid excessive drinking and smoking:

Drinking alcohol and smoking are two of the causes of enzyme waste in the body.

Not only do large amounts of metabolic enzymes need to be used to break down the toxins in tobacco and alcohol, but they also cause the excess production of active oxygen and free radicals, which are the cause of aging and disease.


Furthermore, in order to neutralize the generated active oxygen and free radicals, metabolic enzymes are further wasted.


Avoid excessive drinking and smoking as these can also lead to the waste of enzymes in the body.


*Reference: " Shintani Enzyme "

in conclusion


This time, we introduced the characteristics and key points on how to take enzymes, the driving force behind living a healthy life!

Taking in food enzymes and converting the body's digestive enzymes into metabolic enzymes leads to a healthy and youthful body.


Why not incorporate enzymes into your daily life and make your body healthier than ever?

I hope this will be of some help to your daily life.