Proteolytic. Does the word sound familiar to you? According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, here is the definition of proteolytic:
Of, relating to, or producing proteolysis
Proteolysis might sound like something straight out of a sci-fi book, but it is in fact something that your body is well acquainted with, even if you are not consciously aware of it. As you might have guessed already, both the words proteolysis and proteolytic stem from the word “protein”—proteins being those nifty little organic compounds that keep your hair shiny and build muscles for you.
With this bit of knowledge under your belt, can you guess what proteolytic enzymes are? Let’s take a look!
What Are Proteolytic Enzymes?
Proteolytic enzymes are a subgroup of digestive enzymes. As the name entails, they digest proteins. The process of breaking down proteins into peptide fractions and amino acids is known as proteolysis—hence the word proteolytic in proteolytic enzymes.
With that being said, how are proteolytic enzymes related to systemic enzymes? And how do they differ?
What Are Systemic Enzymes?
Unlike proteolytic enzymes which are produced inside your body, systemic enzymes can only be supplemented. In other words, they are derived from non-human sources and are taken to maintain and build overall health—the reason behind why they are known as “systemic” enzymes. One of the most popular types of systemic enzyme is known as serrapeptase and is derived from silkworms.
Systemic enzymes and proteolytic enzymes don’t have much in common, unless systemic enzymes helping digestion counts as a similarity. (Oh and of course, both of them being… well… enzymes.)
Now that you know what proteolytic enzymes are, can you guess what lipase enzymes are? Let’s find out in the next article!