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Carbohydrases

Carbohydrases help break down sugar, starch and other carbs into simple sugars that the body uses primarily for energy production. Carbohydrates are generally ingested in the form of simple sugars, disaccharides and complex carbohydrates. Carbohydrates contribute about 45 percent of dietary calories, with the majority coming from plant starches. Common carbohydrates include: sucrose (plant sugar; common table sugar); lactose (milk sugar); starch (plant carbohydrate storage molecule); glycogen (animal carbohydrate storage molecule). Brain cells rely almost exclusively on the availability of glucose for energy.

Common carbohydrases include:
• Amylase, Diastase, Glucoamylase: work together for optimal starch digestion
• Invertase: breaks down table sugar, yielding free fructose and glucose
• Lactase: hydrolyzes milk sugar, lactose, yielding glucose and galactose
• a-Galactosidase: breaks down complex carbohydrates found in grains, legumes and cruciferous vegetables

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