Digestive enzyme supplements for heartburn?

My love affair with spicy food came to a sad end a few years ago. Age — and I’m guessing too many jalapenos — have left me prone to heartburn if I eat meals with a fiery flare. My doctor says there’s no underlying condition causing the problem, and advises me to avoid the foods that seem to trigger symptoms. But that’s tricky sometimes. So I was particularly interested when a friend suggested that an over-the-counter (OTC) digestive enzyme supplement might help. I learned pretty quickly that there are lots of ads for the pills and powders. It’s a booming business, with sales for OTC digestive enzymes of all kinds expected to reach $1.6 billion by 2025. About the supplements touted for heartburn relief OTC digestive enzymes claim they can help you break down food, just like digestive enzymes your own body makes (mostly in the pancreas). For example, there’s lipase, which breaks down fats amylase, which breaks down carbohydrates proteases and peptidases, which break down proteins. The supplement versions of these enzymes come from plants and animals. Plant sources include bromelain, derived from pineapples; papain, derived from papayas; and lactase that’s obtained from purified yeasts or fungi. Animal sources include enzymes from the pancreases of pigs, cows, or lambs. But there’s no way to know what’s really in supplements. The FDA does not regulate them, therefore you can’t be sure what the pills are really m...
Source: Harvard Health Blog - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Complementary and alternative medicine Digestive Disorders Health Source Type: blogs

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