How to Survive Holiday Feasting with Enzymes
The holidays are notorious for obliterating any kind of diet. The foods we eat for end-of-year gatherings are different from the rest of the year. For many of us, eating creamy, sugary, fatty foods is the primary reason for celebrating. How can we participate in holiday munching without feeling miserable? Digestive enzyme supplements can help by breaking down the foods you eat. The key is knowing how to take enzymes with those mega-meals full of carbohydrates and fats. The following may be helpful. It may also be a wake-up call. WARNING: GRAPHIC DATA AHEAD! The average holiday dinner contains about 4000 calories. That is one meal, not total per day. The total calorie intake for Thanksgiving Day can run as high as 10,000. Dosing Eating a bigger meal means you need to increase the number of enzyme capsules from what you normally take. Doubling or even tripling your dosage may be necessary. Make sure your enzyme inventory is well stocked before the holidays come along. Foods can be broken down into three main categories: proteins, carbohydrates (includes starches), and fats. So which enzymes are most helpful for holiday meals? Fats Increased fat intake may delay stomach emptying. This means your huge meal will sit in your stomach longer than usual which just increases your misery. Using plant-based lipase enzymes that break down fats while still in the stomach goes a long way in preventing the delay in stomach emptying. You can use the Internet to find out how much fat, protein, and carbs are in your foods. For example, the protein content of turkey meat is about 20% while the fat content is around 10%. Water makes up about 70% of the meat unless you happened to burn the turkey to a crisp. One cup of bread stuffing has about 350 calories of which 17 grams is fat, 44 grams is carbohydrates, and only 6% protein. A slice of pecan pie (456 calories) adds 65 grams carbohydrates, 21 grams fat and 4.5 grams of protein. Pumpkin pie is a little better with “only” 41 grams of carbs. Potato latkes? A 145 gram serving contains 11 grams fat and 31 grams carbs. A cup (254 grams) of egg nog? 19 grams fat, 34 grams carbs, and 10 grams protein. Are you starting to see a pattern? Of course the majority of holiday foods are going to be sweet and creamy fattening. Enzymes won’t help much with all the extra calories you will absorb, so plan on taking lots of walks to burn them off. Carbohydrates, Gas and Bloating Enzymes can help with the increase in carbohydrate intake. Adequate breakdown of complex carbs to simple sugars is necessary to reduce the amount of undigested material in the gut which can be a huge food source for gut bacteria, good and bad. The increased food causes a population explosion among the gut microbes with increased amounts of gas being released by the gut bugs. This contributes to the bloating and expanded waistlines that are epidemic during the holidays. What to Look For My advice for the holidays is to enjoy yourself, practice moderation, and increase the amount of the following enzymes: lipase for fats, amylase and glucoamylase for starches, alpha-galactosidase and xylanase for foods such as cauliflower and legumes. Let the feasting begin!