What is inflammation?
There are two types of inflammation: acute and chronic.
Acute inflammation is short-term, and a healthy response when fending off bacteria, viruses, parasites or injury. Some typical symptoms are localized heat, redness, swelling, pain and loss of function. This is the body’s immune system reacting to fight off foreign bacteria. This typically lasts a few days to weeks.
Chronic inflammation is a constant low-grade level of inflammation. It’s a result of exposure to environmental chemicals/toxins, high stress, a sedentary lifestyle, sleep deprivation, genetic factors, or a diet high in processed foods. Instead of a short-term, localized, site-specific area that the body fights as in acute inflammation, chronic inflammation is a long, mild, whole-body grind. It's important to realize that chronic inflammation is the source of many if not most diseases, including cancer, obesity, and heart disease. While inflammation is a perfectly normal and beneficial process that occurs when your body's white blood cells and chemicals protect you from foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses, it leads to trouble when the inflammatory response gets out of hand.
Health issues potentially resulting from inflammation
Chronic inflammation is linked to virtually every disease in one way or another. More often than not, it is the eventual signs of inflammation that alert people to the presence of disease. By that time, it has usually been present in the body for a while.
Here are just a few of the illnesses that may result from prolonged or chronic inflammation:
1. Alzheimer’s disease. Brain cells may be destroyed by chronically elevated levels of inflammation.
2. Congestive heart failure. Chronic periods of inflammation may cause the heart muscle to wear out and waste away.
3. Fibromyalgia. Inflammation attacks the connective tissues, leading to pain.
4. Asthma and Cytokines. “Cytokines are inflammatory immunologic proteins that are there to fight off infections and ward off cancers and assist the lungs where asthma and viruses are are present. But when they are out of control, they can make you very ill. A cytokine storm is the result of an immune system gone wild. The body’s own killer immune cells are often defective, resulting in increased production of inflammatory proteins that can lead to organ failure and death. Serrapeptase can reduce the level of these inflammatory proteins.
5. Arthritis. Inflammatory cytokines may cause cellular activity that leads to the destruction of synovial fluid and joint cartilage.
6. Neuropathy. Inflammation induces autoimmune reactions that attack the vascular, myelin, and connective tissues, potentially causing nerve irritation.
SerraFast Capsules are designed to help the body fight chronic inflammation and are formulated using the following ingredients:
Serrapeptase, technically called Serratio Peptidase, is a proteolytic enzyme, which means that it chops up or digests protein. It is produced by bacteria in the gut of silkworms and is used to digest their cocoons. When this enzyme is isolated and coated in the form of a tablet, it has been shown to act as an anti-inflammatory and a pain-blocker, much like aspirin, ibuprofen and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). What’s more, preliminary research indicates that Serrapeptase may even help inhibit plaque build-up in arteries, thereby preventing atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and a resulting heart attack or stroke. Therefore, much like aspirin, this naturally derived enzyme may work to prevent inflammation, pain, heart attack and stroke. Unlike aspirin and other over-the-counter (OTC) NSAIDs, Serrapeptase has not been shown to cause ulcers and stomach bleeding. Although the Serrapeptase enzyme was discovered in silk worms, no silkworms are actually used in the manufacturing process of commercially available Serrapeptase supplements. The enzymes are extracted from Serratia bacteria, and grown in controlled environments without the use of a silkworm host.
Serrapeptase works in three ways:
It reduces inflammation by thinning the fluids formed from injury, and facilitating the fluid’s drainage. This in turn, also speeds tissue repair.
It helps alleviate pain by inhibiting the release of pain-inducing amines called bradykinin. (Bradykinin mediates inflammation by causing vasodilation, by increasing vascular permeability, and by stimulating the synthesis of prostaglandins.)
It enhances cardiovascular health by breaking down the protein by-products of blood coagulation called fibrin. Conveniently, Serrapeptase is able to dissolve the fibrin and other dead or damaged tissue without harming living tissue. This could enable the dissolution of atherosclerotic plaques without causing any harm to the inside of the arteries.
Because Serrapeptase digests or dissolves all non-living tissue, including blood clots, cysts and arterial plaque, it is used to treat a variety of conditions, including sprains and torn ligaments, postoperative swelling, venous thrombosis (clots in the legs), ear, nose and throat infections and atherosclerosis. A pain-reliever and anti-inflammatory supplement that has anti-clotting activities without the risk of stomach bleeding? Sounds too good to be true? Let’s look at the research. When searching PubMed for Serrapeptase, one can find close to 40 clinical studies, most of which are from European or Asian researchers. The studies, on the whole, conclude that Serrapeptase can have tremendous benefits.
Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri)
Bacopa monnieri, a plant commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine, has an age-old reputation for being an effective and powerful herb helpful for memory and combating stress. Bacopa monnieri, known to most as Brahmi, acts as an adaptogen; which means it helps the body adapt to new or stressful situations. The following facts show the power and versatility of this therapeutic plant.
Supports the Brain
As people age, it’s common for age-related brain degradation to happen. The active compounds in Brahmi, known as bacosides, positively influence brain cells that prompt the regeneration of brain tissue. In one animal study, long-term supplementation with bacosides showed therapeutic value against the rapid degeneration associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
Encourages Normal Blood Pressure
Brahmi has been shown to increase the utilization of nitric oxide in the body and also appears to encourage vascular muscle function, two benefits that positively influence normal blood pressure.
Strong Antioxidant Activity
Brahmi provides protection against oxidative damage, a type of cellular damage caused by free radicals. The herb has also been shown to enhance antioxidant activity in other organs, like the kidneys.
Methylsulfonylmethane is a sulphur (a chemical) found in fresh raw foods including fruits, vegetables and meat. MSM, is a white crystalline substance that contains 34% sulphur.
How does it work?
Laboratory studies have found that MSM has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Sulphur, which is a major component of MSM, plays an important role in making collagen and glucosamine, both of which are vital for healthy bones and joints, and in the production of immunoglobulins, which help your immune system.
MSM very effectively fights inflammations resulting from autoimmune reactions (in which the body's immune system turns on itself). For example, people who suffer from arthritis often benefit greatly from MSM. Several studies have shown that supplementation of MSM significantly reduces joint degeneration and inflammation. In one study, 24 people with symptomatic osteoarthritis were treated with either a regular (NSAID) drug, or with 3 grams of MSM daily. After one month, both groups noted equal improvements in pain and stiffness.
Some research suggests that there is a minimum concentration of MSM that must be maintained in the body to preserve normal physiological function and the molecular structure of our musculoskeletal systems. Low concentrations of MSM in our bodies have been linked with unspecified complaints of fatigue, depression, high sensitivity to physical and psychological stress, and with a large number of degenerative diseases.
Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Curcumin
Arguably, the most powerful aspect of curcumin is its ability to control inflammation.
Studies found that curcumin is among the most effective anti-inflammatory compounds in the world. Diseases such as cancer, ulcerative colitis, arthritis, high cholesterol and chronic pain can be the result of inflammation.
The anti-inflammatory effects of curcumin have also been studied as a possible treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.
An in-depth analysis of all the studies evaluating curcumin’s ability to manage inflammatory bowel disease (IBS, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis) found that many patients were able to stop taking their prescribed corticosteroids because their condition improved so dramatically by taking curcumin.
Serrapeptase and many other enzymes are destroyed by stomach acid. To avoid this, manufacturers use complex enteric coating formulations which use solvents which we find unacceptable. To address this problem, we use slow release DRcaps® from Capsugel for our Serra Fast Capsules.
Clinical evidence shows that the DR Capsule takes about 45 minutes to start disintergrating compared to the 5 minutes of a normal capsule. Complete release of the capsule’s contents thus takes place in the intestine.
Each 400mg slow release DR vegi-cap contains Serrapeptase (100,000su)100mg; MSM 100mg; Brahmi 100mg; Curcumin 100mg; Bioperine 2,5mg. Contains no preservatives or fillers.
UNDERSTANDING SERRAPEPTASE ENZYME ACTIVITY – SPU, SU AND IU
Since an enzyme's potency is the number one factor in determining how well it works, understanding what these measurements mean and how they relate to each other is essential in order to be able to compare Serrapeptase enzyme supplements, choose the most effective one, and to take an effective dosage.
SPU (serratiopeptidase units) and SU (serrapeptase units) are essentially the same units and can be used interchangeably (although SPU is generally used more often than SU). Both SPU and SU measure the activity or potency of the Serrapeptase enzyme based on a specific scientific test. Therefore, SPU and SU are considered the 'active units' of Serrapeptase. "S" represents Serrapeptase and "SP" represents Serratiopeptidase in this case, virtually 2 acronyms for the exact same enzyme. Since several enzymes begin with the letter S, SP has been adopted as the more common abbreviation for Serrapeptase.
Many companies use IU, or international units, when describing the activity of their Serrapeptase enzyme supplements. However, IUs are a completely different measurement than SPU or SU. An IU is defined as the quantity of a biological substance (usually a vitamin or hormone) that produces a specific biological effect that has been agreed upon as an international standard. Despite its name, IU is not part of the International System of Units used in physics and chemistry. The IU should not be confused with the enzyme unit, also known as the International unit of enzyme activity and abbreviated as U.
Although IUs are a measure of potency, they can't be used to describe enzymes. This is because the method for measuring the potency of the Serrapeptase enzyme and other enzymes isn't the same as measuring the potency of a vitamin. For Serrapeptase, it isn't the quantity (usually measured in milligrams or mg) that counts; rather, it is the amount of fibrin or other proteins that Serrapeptase can break down or digest that determines its potency.
All of this may seem a little technical, but here's the bottom line to clear up any confusion you may have – the proper measurement for Serrapeptase enzyme activity is SPU or SU since it is based on a test specifically designed for this enzyme. Any product or website stating that measurements listed in SPU and SU are considerably less potent than those measured in IU are completely false and misleading.
What is a Cytokine Storm?
Cytokines are small proteins released by many different cells in the body, including those of the immune system where they coordinate the body’s response against infection and trigger inflammation. The name ‘cytokine’ is derived from the Greek words for cell (cyto) and movement (kinos).
Sometimes the body’s response to infection can go into overdrive.When the virus enters the lungs, it triggers an immune response, attracting immune cells to the region to attack the virus, resulting in localised inflammation. But in some patients, excessive or uncontrolled levels of cytokines are released which then activate more immune cells, resulting in hyperinflammation. This can seriously harm or even kill the patient.
The phenomenon became more widely known after the 2005 outbreak of the avian H5N1 influenza virus, also known as “bird flu”, when the high fatality rate was linked to an out-of-control cytokine response.
Cytokine storms might explain why some people have a severe reaction to coronaviruses while others only experience mild symptoms. They could also be the reason why younger people are less affected, as their immune systems are less developed and so produce lower levels of inflammation-driving cytokines.
SerraFast Capsules can help to prevent a Cytokine Storm.
More about Enzymes.
There are 2 types of enzymes.
Digestive enzyme supplements are designed to be taken with each meal to complement the body’s own digestive enzymes produced primarily by the pancreas. The pancreas secretes enzymes to breakdown the main food groups entering the body, including: amylases for carbohydrate digestion, lipases for digesting fats and proteases for protein digestion. But this doesn’t always work out as it should.
Supplemental digestive enzymes go the extra mile: they contain the above enzymes as well as others that the body does not specifically generate, which aid digestion of specific types of fibres or carbohydrates. One example of this is cellulose: an enzyme which helps us breakdown cellulose – a plant fibre otherwise indigestible to humans.
Why do we need a supplement if we make most of the enzymes ourselves? In a state of optimal health and nutrition we do make adequate amounts of digestive enzymes ourselves and obtain others from the fresh raw foods we eat. But throw in stress, chronic disease, poor nutrition and food allergies – to mention just a few of life’s problems – and suddenly the body is not so well equipped.
As we age, the level of enzymes we produce declines. Since we rely heavily on enzymes to unlock nutrients from the food we eat, the importance of good digestion with adequate enzymes becomes paramount to maintain good health. Serrapeptase taken before a meal is beneficial for digestive health in seniors who suffer from age related digestive issues.
Systemic enzymes should be taken on an empty stomach (although they can be taken with food); allowing them to be absorbed directly into the circulation, to support the body where needed. These systemic enzymes can help:
Maintain healthy immune functions
Maintain healthy blood flow & circulation
Maintain healthy joints
Support normal, healthy temperature balance
Assist with muscle soreness after exercise
Whether enzymes work locally to assist digestion or systemically to work throughout the body is determined by how the enzymes are taken (i.e. with food or without food). Digestive enzymes can assist systemically if taken away from food, while systemic enzymes can assist digestion if taken with food.