By Tim O'Shea, D.C.
"Enzymes will be the business of the future."
John Naisbitt, Megatrends 2000
Why do we die?
Why do we age? Why do things wear out? Do we just live our lives
and then all of a sudden out of the blue a disease bug comes
floating in from who knows where and causes an illness that kills
us? Unless of course the right drug can be found to "kill the
Do you believe this? The majority of people in America
actually do, but their numbers are shrinking steadily. People are
now becoming aware that lifestyle has everything to do with
susceptibility to disease. Lifestyle: you know - diet, stress
level, mental outlook, daily physical movement, or lack thereof.
Incontrovertible evidence that has been around for 75 years is
now being brought forth and substantiated by mainstream
authorities that the determining factor of health and long life
may correspond to one simple condition: blood toxicity.
Toxicity means poison.
You may think of poisons as things like arsenic, or cyanide,
or rat poison, or things that secret agents in James Bond movies
bite in capsules just before they're captured. As every good
ninja knows, there are many levels and types of poisons. The best
ones kill you the slowest and are undetectable. So let's consider
the slowest poisons of all: the food we eat.
Most modern food which the American diet comprises, is poison.
Why do I say that? A good poison will block the flow of blood,
decrease the amount of oxygen to the tissues, interfere with one
or more major systems of the body, actually cause addiction to
the poison itself, and eventually kill the subject. No poison in
history has achieved these goals on the scale that processed food
Food processing has only been around for about the last 80
years or so. And it's only been really effective for about the
last 50. Food processing came about mainly during wartime when we
had to figure out how to transport large quantities of food to
the soldiers without spoiling on the way. After the war, the
techniques that had been learned were applied to the grocery
business. The industry found out that the more enzymes they could
remove from the food, the longer it lasted. If that meant that
they were also removing most or all of the nutrition from the
food, hey, too bad. They weren't in the health business; this was
the Shelf-Life business.
So what are enzymes? Take a banana. A green one. Put it on a
windowsill for a couple days. It turns yellow and ripens. That's
An alligator kills you in a swamp. But he doesn't eat you
right away. Instead he drags you off to some pile of brush and
lets you rot for a few weeks. Then when you're seasoned enough,
you become an entree. What made the change? Enzymes.
A dog buries a bone. It was too hard. Two weeks later he
digs it up. Nice and soft. Yum-yum. That's enzymes at work.
Very simply, enzymes are properties of all living cells that
bring about changes. Enzymes are active in every cell of your
body every second. Enzymes change things into usable forms.
The class of enzymes you're probably most familiar with is the
one that involves digestion. The mouth, the stomach, the
pancreas, the liver, and the intestine produce various enzymes
whose job is to break down any food we eat into usable
components. The key word here is 'any.' No matter how greasy, no
matter how much extra cheese, or how much white sugar, no matter
how indigestible a food is, your body will try to break it down
by means of enzymes.
Some foods are very easy on the body. Turns out, those are the
ones which contain within them all the enzymes necessary for
complete digestion. Examples: apples, corn, watermelon, green
peppers, pears, celery, get the idea? Raw fruits and vegetables.
These foods don't require that the body waste energy producing a
lot of powerful digestive juices in order to change them into a
Dr. Edward Howell, the leading world authority on
enzymes, tells us it's as though we are given a bank account of
enzyme energy at the beginning of our lives. The more of that
bank account we have to use for digestion, the less is left over
for the thousands of other tasks which enzymes have to perform in
our bodies. Minor details like thinking, breathing, walking,
seeing, etc. - all depend on enzymes. So think of someone grossly
overweight. Do they do all these other functions well, or do they
seem impaired? Obvious. Reason: they use too much of their enzyme
bank account trying to digest all the heaps of indigestible food
that keeps coming down the hatch. So there's not much left over
for basic life functions.
Let's talk about the food we eat. Now most of us know what we
should eat. But when it actually comes down to it, which it does
several times a day, many of us simply eat food that "we're
hungry for." We can't really be blamed for this, right? Billions
of dollars are spent conditioning us about what we should feel
hungry for. Look at TV, billboards, radio, newspapers - what are
we constantly assaulted with? Images of burgers, fries, ice
cream, chips, Pepsi, candy, milk, cheese, etc. Just hearing these
words makes our Pavlovian mouths water. These are the best
poisons ever made. Not only do they contain little or no nutrient
content; even if they did there's almost no chance of our getting
to it because these foods have no enzymes in them. All those were
taken out during processing. Therefore the entire burden of
digestion is placed on our body's own enzymes. Foods are being
broken down only partially, or not at all, by our own digestive
enzymes, because many foods are so foreign, so processed, so new
to the human race that they overstress our body's ability to
So what happens to all this undigested food? Where does it
Well, what happens is, a lot goes in, but never comes out. A
little vague? The average 35 year old has at least 4-22 lbs of
undigested food in the intestine alone, even according to the
FDA. John Wayne on autopsy was found to have closer to 44
lbs. of it! Elvis had more than 20 lbs. This rotting
debris doesn't just stay in the intestine, but can make its way
intact into the bloodstream, to be deposited in practically any
location of the body. Such food is foreign and may cause
inflammation in any area where it becomes lodged.
Gastroenterologists call the condition Leaky Gut Syndrome.
It can be the mechanism for just about any -itis you can think
of: arthritis, gastritis, colitis, hepatitis,nephritis,
myositis, bursitis, etc. Allergies! Reaction to
undigested food has been implicated as the cause of over 90% of
allergies. All these conditions usually don't just pop up for no
reason, or because of some genetic tendency. Why look for an
exotic cause when the obvious is staring you in the face? Years
of eating food that cannot be broken down has predictable and
definite physical consequences. Diet does not affect your health;
diet determines your health.
Dr. Howell makes the observation that humans are the only
animals who, in their natural environment, live their lives with
disease. Think about it: how many diseases are there for humans
in the pathology textbooks? 500? 1000? What other animal in
nature gets even 5 diseases? Why? Dr. Howell explains that humans
are the only animals that eat processed foods, the only animals
who subsist on enzyme-less food:
"All wild creatures get their enzyme supplements in the raw food itself."
Enzyme Nutrition p7
The saliva of horses and cattle doesn't even contain enzymes,
like ours does. The work of digestion is largely aided by the
enzymes in the grass or hay they eat. A whale that had 32 seals
in its stomach was found to secrete no digestive enzymes!
Digestion took place by means of enzymes contained within the
seals themselves. Think of the burden this removes from the
whale's digestive systems during his lifetime. Or more
accurately, since we're the exception, think of the burden
enzymeless food places on our systems. We must expend great
quantities of energy producing and maintaining digestive enzymes
that Dr. Howell describes as "pathologically rich." What a
waste of energy. At what a price.
Going back to the blood now, and the idea of toxicity,
remember that the blood was the carrier which deposited all the
undigested food debris in various locations throughout the
body. But this type of debris also has observable effects on the
red blood cells themselves. Undigested fat and protein in the
diet commonly cause a condition known as erythrocyte aggregation,
which is simply clumping of the red cells. This causes
circulation problems and may be the primary cause of chronic
fatigue. It stands to reason if the blood cells are all stuck
together like globs of motor oil, they cannot flow very easily
through the blood vessels. Circulation is the only way that the
body's cells can obtain oxygen, which they need every
second. Clumping of red cells graphically decreases the amount of
oxygen that is being carried to the tissues. We're not just
talking about fatigue any more; lack of oxygen spells tissue
degeneration, premature aging, and early death.
Those shooting pains down the legs or arms are sometimes
simply the result of muscles being forced to operate without
sufficient oxygen, screaming in protest. Again, lack of available
oxygen can cause degeneration and dysfunction of any organ or
system of the entire body: heart, lungs, skin, kidneys,
digestion, you name it. The cholesterol crystals that precipitate
out of solution in the blood because of dangerously high levels
of blood cholesterol - these crystals classically lodge in joints
and cause gout and other types of arthritis. These and many other
problems started out with a diet that lacked enzymes...
Ever get food poisoning? Or maybe you know someone. We think
of food poisoning as being violently ill, throwing up, and being
incapacitated for a few days, because of having gotten some bad
food at a restaurant. But there's another type of food poisoning
that is much more common, in fact epidemic. This is the type of
disorder the doctors and hospitals just can't quite put their
finger on. The tests are all negative. But the problem just goes
on and on: no energy, intermittent sharp pains in the stomach
area, bad skin, bad breath, chronic low-grade allergies, constant
feeling of impending disaster - like things are just 'not right.'
So what's the solution? Same as the problem: enzymes.
Put back into the food the enzymes that were taken out by food
processing. Put back into the body enzymes that can detox the
blood and the tissues, where all this half-digested residue has
taken up residence. Natural whole-food enzyme supplements are not
drugs. Drugs would not work for such a problem as detox without
having side effects that could be worse than the original problem
itself. Because with drugs, the body has to spend enormous
amounts of energy trying to normalize the system, trying to
remove the drug.
Natural supplements, on the other hand, take away nothing from
the body and require that no energy be expended by the body to
get rid of them after they've done their job. Natural whole-food
supplements contain within them exactly what a perfect food
should contain: all the enzymes necessary for their complete
breakdown and absorption by the body, with nothing left over.
Only in the last five years have powerful whole-food enzymes
been available. Dr. Howell himself, having died in 1988, could
only recommend a 70% raw food diet as the best way to insure
complete digestion. He would certainly have welcomed a supplement
as clean and powerful as a natural whole-food enzyme which could
be taken along with meals and could serve to help replace the
enzymes removed in food processing.
Enzyme supplements are such a simple solution to a whole
spectrum of health challenges, many of them life-threatening,
that they are generally not considered by mainstream
practitioners. Most MDs are taught to look for the dramatic
rescue, the quick-acting drug, the heroic procedures which can
snatch the patient from the jaws of death, or whatever. That's
more sexy; it's "real medicine." The first problem is that most
medical doctors don't even know of the existence of whole-food
enzymes, because such supplements are too inexpensive to be sold
by the pharmaceutical companies. Yet. The second problem is that
medical doctors have a very limited exposure to enzymes in
medical school. The only concept they usually have is what is
found in Guyton's, the standard text. They learn that
enzymes are "catalysts," which means they cause things to happen
but are themselves unchanged in the process. Dr. Howell, who was
himself an MD, proved not only was this idea inaccurate, but that
there was a grand and dynamic interchange between the enzymes of
digestion and the enzymes of all the other life functions, which
are called enzymes of metabolism. Less than 20 digestive enzymes
have been discovered; but there may be as many as 5000 metabolic
For this reason the family physician may not be the best
source of information when it comes to whole food enzymes. Why?
Because the patient is taking the first step in the dangerous
direction known as I Can Be Responsible for My Own Health. Most
doctors don't support this idea, because it tends to take away
their control of things. And if you don't think the name of the
whole game is Control, just observe any TV channel with a
stopwatch and tell me how long you can sit there without someone
telling you to take some type of medication. Five minutes? Ten?
Your job is to need as many drugs as possible between now and the
day you die. Their job is to sell them to you. Does this have
anything to do with health? No. This has to do with
pharmaceutical economics. Health is an entirely different topic
Dieticians and nutritionists go to all this trouble
categorizing foods according to content, telling you that this
food has so many mg. of calcium, that one has so much protein, or
they talk about calories, or food combining, or eating for your
blood type, or some Zone, or any number of trendy notions. But it
actually matters much less what's in the food than how much of
the nutrients eventually ends up in your cells. If the food was
never broken down in the tract, well then, it went right through
you. Or worse, it's still in there. It doesn't matter what we
eat; it only matters what we digest.
Whole food enzymes can be the key to health, without
changing one single other thing. Detox the blood. What's
the alternative? The toxins accumulate in the blood, just like
they always have. Result: allergies or any type of disease.
Almost sounds too simple. But that's the hallmark of the classic
cure - simplicity. We're not adding anything new. We're simply
replacing something that has been artificially removed by food
processing: enzymes. We allow the body to find its normal
equilibrium. Mainly that just means stop poisoning it.
Unless we take in sufficient enzymes to completely break our food down, we eat too much. With the modern American processed food diet, our only salvation from "digging our graves with our
teeth" is this : whole food enzymes.
MD Enzyme Nutrition
Tilden, JH, MD Toxemia Explained
Guyton, AC, MD Medical Physiology
Whittaker, J, MD Best and Worst of Today's
Carrell, Alexis MD Man, The Unknown
Jensen, Bernard Empty Harvest 1990
For comments or questions, contact Dr. O'Shea @firstname.lastname@example.org