Saturday, April 6, 2013

Enzyme Quackery

I feel it important to have a quick look at this particular slide from the YOR Health presentation:

So I thought it wise to get a second opinion on the enzyme claims.

'Stephen Barrett, M.D., a retired psychiatrist who resides near Chapel Hill, North Carolina, has achieved national renown as an author, editor, and consumer advocate. In addition to heading Quackwatch, he is vice-president of the Institute for Science in Medicine and a Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. In 1984, he received an FDA Commissioner's Special Citation Award for Public Service in fighting nutrition quackery. In 1986, he was awarded honorary membership in the American Dietetic Association. From 1987 through 1989, he taught health education at The Pennsylvania State University. He is listed in Marquis Who's Who in America and received the 2001 Distinguished Service to Health Education Award from the American Association for Health Education. His research library, pictured below, houses more than 6,000 books and 100,000 documents and recordings collected over a 40-year period (source).'

The most important quotes I found from Dr. Barretts research on enzymes are stated below:

"The enzyme content of food has no relevance to health. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which collects voluminous data on our food and nutrient intake, does not measure "food enzyme consumption" because it has no nutrition or health significance"

"The digestion of food is not an energy drain on the body."

“Enzymes in food cannot remedy a lack of cellular enzymes. All plant and animal products contain enzymes. They are responsible for both growth and post-harvest deterioration (wilting, discoloration, rancidity, etc.). They have nothing to do with the digestive process after food is consumed.”

“Raw food contains no enzymes needed for digestion. All the enzymes needed for human digestion are made in the body.”

"'Food enzymes' are not needed by the body, either for digestion or for any other purpose."

"Food supplements are not necessary for human nutrition."

Based on Dr. Barrett's extensive knowledge resulting from valid and reliable research, I would be more likely to believe his side of the story.


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