- What is papain?
Papain is a protein-dissolving enzyme that can be found and also extracted from the unripe papaya fruit. For example, the green papaya that can be easily found in Southeast Asia where it’s widely used as a salad vegetable because of the great source of papain. This enzyme is among the many digestive controlling ones that can be found in nature. As it can easily be found in papayas, the enzyme is also known under the name of ‘papaya proteinase’.
The role papain plays in the human body is a very important one, as it is highly involved in the digestive processes that engage breaking down protein fibers. Because of this incredible quality it has, the papain enzyme is widely used in South America as a digestive aid for meat eating consumers. Moreover, locals also use it as an aid to eliminate toxins from the body, but also as a powerful antiseptic, anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory instrument.
In order to work properly, the enzyme has to make smaller proteins by breaking down larger ones. This process is done by destroying the bonds inside the protein chains or at their end and transforming them into peptides or amino-acids subunits. By doing this, pepin triggers the digestive process and increases the nutrient absorption of food based on proteins. As it can hydrolyze proteins, pepin also plays a key role in the normal physiological processes and can also have an important task when it comes to curing a wide range of diseases.
- Health benefits of papain
When it comes to health benefits, papain is mainly good for digestion. The enzyme has protein-digestive properties that can serve the body and play a key role in providing enzymatic support to the stomach, the pancreas and to the intestines.
But its health benefits aren’t related only to the internal use of the enzyme. Due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-septic properties, papain can effectively be applied on:
- open wounds
- bug stings
Moreover, it can also function properly when it comes to removing dead skin tissue.
In what concerns the immune system support, papain can also transform the immune system into a healthier one when it comes to cancer treatments. Moreover, as the enzyme also has anti-tumor capacities, it’s highly recommended for consumption. But its properties don’t stop here. Papain has anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties, as well. This means that it can effectively reduce the fungal pathogen that causes pawpaw fruit rot and also reduce prostate and joint inflammations. Furthermore, this powerful enzyme can also reduce the swelling determined by prostatitis.
As its effects are also antioxidant, the papain enzyme can help in protecting the body against cellular damage caused by free radicals and prevent bacterial infections and spoilage normally caused by oxidation.
Moreover, it can relieve acute prostate inflammations due to benign prostatic hypertrophy. The enzyme is also good for bruises, sprains, strains, sore muscles and wounds produced by different surgeries. Furthermore, athletes can benefit a lot from the consumption of papain, as ankle injuries, finger fractures and in fact all athletic injuries can heal in a shorter period of time when this enzyme is consumed. The recovery speed is also increased by papain when it comes to oral, nasal and knee surgeries.
Other important health benefits of papain include those for Celiac disease. Wheat gluten, a major factor that produces this disease can be highly broken down by this enzyme. Moreover, papain can also help patients affected by this disease to tolerate small amounts of wheat in their organisms if it’s consumed for a longer period of time.
Furthermore, patients who suffer from shingles, herpes and viral infections can also benefit greatly from the periodical consumption of papain. The creams that contain this enzyme as a main ingredient can be effectively applied on the affected skin areas in order to reduce pain, but also control redness. Overall, it can reduce side effects produced by these ailments and the soreness they cause. Papain can also prevent: