Digestive issues aren’t just unpleasant; they also affect overall well-being. More than 15 million Americans are plagued by heartburn daily, according to rightdiagnosis.com. WebMD reported as many as 55 million U.S. men, women and children live with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Approximately 7 percent of the population say they have excessive or bothersome belching, and 11 percent report frequent bloating, per the American College of Gastroenterology.
Numerous digestive aids and combinations can support the unique needs of each part of the digestive system. The most important of these are probiotics and digestive enzymes.
The digestive system is host to many living microorganisms, some beneficial and some harmful. Beneficial bacteria support a healthy digestive process and the body’s ability to efficiently digest food, improve nutrient absorption and eliminate toxins.
Probiotics populate the gut with beneficial bacteria and help promote efficient digestive function and absorption. Probiotics also support immune function, absorption of minerals and prevent the build-up of harmful microorganisms, which can lead to health compromise and weaker immune function.
This makes the balance between “beneficial" and “bad" bacteria of paramount importance.
Digestive enzymes aid in regularity and the absorption of nutrients. They are secreted by the salivary glands and pancreas. Their function is to break down large macronutrients, such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, into smaller, more easily digested forms of these nutrients that are more readily absorbed as simpler sugars, peptides, amino acids and fatty acids. These nutrients can then be utilized by the body for energy, growth, repair and health.
Read more about ingredients to support digestive health in INSIDER’s Digestive Health Digital Magazine.