b"disease and ulcerative colitis are the best-known types of IBDAdd Enzymesand affect as many as one million Americans.A growing number of studies suggest that probiotics canDigestive enzymes are benefit both Crohns disease and ulcerative colitis in severalbiologically active proteins ways. Besides competing with bad bacteria for real estate inthat help you digest food and the gut, probiotics stimulate the immune system and enhanceabsorb nutrients. When you the barrier function of the intestinal walls. Recent studies alsoare young, your body creates show that probiotics tame the intestinal inflammation that canall of the enzymes you need for create future problems. Whats more, research has confirmedhealthy and complete digestion. that the addition of beneficial bacteria can help suppress theBut as you age, this production H. pyloribegins to slow down. Over time, bug that contributes to ulcers and other digestiveyou can find yourself deficient problems. in the critical enzymes needed for good digestion. Fortunately, The Right Ratio supplemental enzymes can The majority of bacteria that live in your body can be found insupport the digestive process in the colonat least one billion per milliliter of fluid. The smallthe same way as those produced intestine, on the other hand, has only about ten thousandby your own body. bacteria per milliliter of fluid. But its the ratio between theThe three key digestive enzymes good bacteria and the harmful bacteria in both your small andare protease, which breaks apart large intestines that matters. Ideally, the ratio of good bacteriaprotein; lipase, which processes to bad bacteria should be 85 percent to 15 percent. But for mostfat; and amylase, which digests people, that ratio is out of balance. carbohydrates. Without these When there is a proper balance of good to bad bacteria, thethree enzymes, your body intestinal lining remains strong. It is here, on the intestinalwouldnt be able to process that lining, that the good bacteria compete with the disease- cheeseburger you had for lunch. causing bacteria for food and space. When the good bacteriaA fourth enzyme, lactase, is are overpowered, the harmful bacteria starve the good andneeded to digest the milk sugar steal their spot on the lining. This is when the intestinal liningin dairy products. becomes damaged. As a result, the irritated and inflamed lining becomes permeable, allowing all kinds of substances to enterWhen choosing an enzyme the bloodstream that normally would not get through.supplement, look for a broad-spectrum digestive supplement that contains a balanced blend Pick the Right Probiotic of amylase, protease, and lipase. When shopping for a probiotic supplement, many peopleUnless the label notes otherwise, believe that more is better. So they grab whatever productit's best to take your enzymes boasts the highest number of beneficial bacteria. Productwith meals or immediately after potency is typically labeled with the number of colony formingeating. Taking digestive enzymes units, or CFUs (viable cells). There is no recommended dailyon an empty stomach causes dose for probiotics, but research suggests aiming for one tothem to be rapidly absorbed into two billion live CFUs to maintain good health. If you are takingthe bloodstream before they antibiotics, have digestive problems, or suffer from Candidacan help digest the food you or frequent urinary tract infections, you may want to boostare eating. THE G O OD GUT9"