Betaine hydrochloride (betaine HCL) is an acidic form of betaine, a vitamin-like substance found in grains and other foods. Betaine HCL is recommended as a supplemental source of hydrochloric acid for people who have a deficiency of stomach acid production, a condition called hypochlorhydria.
The acidic environment in the stomach helps to break down dietary fats and protein for better assimilation of the smaller nutritional components in the body-proteins into peptides and amino acids, fats into fatty acids.
Pepsin is the powerful enzyme in gastric juice that breaks down dietary protein. The body produces pepsin in response to eating protein, but insufficient pepsin may prevent the proper dismantling of ingested protein and hinder subsequent nutrient absorption.
Hydrochloric acid (HCL) helps in the digestion of fats and proteins. As we get older, the stomach’s ability to secrete HCL and digestive enzymes weakens. Lowered acidity in the stomach is a leading cause of digestive complaints and can lead to chronic inflammation if left untreated. Insufficient acidity leaves undigested food particles to rot, disallowing vital nutrients to be absorbed. It also creates an environment more prone to support the proliferation of potentially harmful microorganisms. Symptoms of low stomach acidity may include gas, bloating, food allergies, constipation, anemia, and nausea.*
Additionally, HCL in the stomach promotes pepsin production. If the stomach becomes an insufficiently acidic environment, pepsin production may also decrease, further inhibiting proper digestion and nutrient absorption.*
In the stomach pepsin participates in the partial degradation of proteins into smaller units called peptides, which are absorbed from the intestine into the bloodstream or are broken down further by pancreatic enzymes.
Because pepsin and HCL work together to break down your food, healthcare professionals recommend taking pepsin at the same time you take your HCL supplements.*
- • Supports healthy stomach acidity*
- • Aids in protein digestion*
- • Promotes nutrient absorption*
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