How long does it take for digestive enzyme to work

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how long does it take for digestive enzyme to work

Are you wondering how long it takes for digestive enzymes to work? Well, I’ve got you covered.

I am Dr. Tun Min, a GP working in Northwest NHS UK and I’ve been trying to provide unique and useful content regarding supplements.

Most of my patients ask me the same question when they begin taking digestive enzymes. 

Are you ready to find out how long it takes for digestive enzymes to kick in?

Let’s get started with a quick recap on digestive enzymes.

What Are Digestive Enzymes?

Digestive enzymes are proteins produced by your body to break down food and release its nutrients. 

They are secreted from various parts of your digestive system including the mouth, stomach, small intestine, and pancreas. However, it is the pancreas that produces the most important digestive enzymes for breaking down carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. When food is broken down into smaller units by these enzymes, they can be easily absorbed and used by your cells.

Natural production of digestive enzymes declines with age, stress, disease, or a poor diet. This can result in symptoms like gas, bloating, and abdominal pain due to incomplete food breakdown. To alleviate these digestive discomforts and improve nutrient absorption, a digestive enzyme supplement can be used as a replacement for natural enzymes.

How Long Does it Take For Digestive Enzymes To Kick In?

Your digestive enzymes will start working as soon as they come into contact with the food.However, the time it takes to see results can vary depending on several factors, such as the dosage, and the individual’s digestive system. 

Most people start to notice the benefits within a few days or a few weeks.

How Do You Know If Digestive Enzymes Are Working?

  • You will feel less bloated 
  • You will have less gas and abdominal pain
  • Tolerate most foods
  • Your bowel movements will be more regular
  • You might absorb more nutrients and restore healthy weight
  • Less fatigue and increased energy

Diet affects how quickly a digestive enzyme supplement works 

You cannot rely on the digestive enzyme supplement to do all the work for you. To get the most out of your digestive enzymes, it is crucial to eat a healthy diet.

You should add more fiber, fresh organic foods, and nutrient-dense ones to your diet. On the other side, you should cut down on unhealthy fats, processed foods, and fizzy drinks.

Additionally, it is also a great idea to include some foods that naturally contain digestive enzymes like papaya, mango, bananas, ginger, and fermented foods (also contain probiotics).

How to Take Digestive Enzymes for Maximum Efficiency

  • When is the best time to take enzymes?

The best time to take digestive enzymes is right before or right as you start eating. The function of digestive enzymes is to break down the food we consume, so it’s most effective to take them with meals. Usually anywhere from 30 minutes to right before you eat is ideal.

  • Do I need to take them with every meal?

Taking enzyme supplements in the morning will not support digestion throughout the day. 

The frequency of digestive enzyme supplements can vary based on individual needs. Some people may need to take them with every meal, while others may only need them occasionally or as needed. 

  • How much should I take?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to how many digestive enzymes you should take in a day. Dosing for digestive enzyme supplements differs for each enzyme and different conditions. Therefore, make sure to follow instructions on product labels and consult with your healthcare provider to determine the appropriate dosage for your individual needs.

The Bottom Line

Digestive enzymes spring into action as soon as they come into contact with food. You’ll start noticing results within a few days, although it may vary from person to person and take up to a few weeks.

To ensure optimal effectiveness, it’s best to take digestive enzymes just before your meals and adjust the frequency and dosage based on your individual needs. Also, don’t forget the importance of maintaining a healthy whole food-based diet to maximize the benefits of your digestive enzymes. 

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Dr Tun Min is s GP working in NHS UK and writing articles about supplements and vitamins based on personal clinical experience and clinical research.

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