Invertase is a carbohydrate-digesting enzyme that splits sucrose (common table sugar) into its component parts, glucose and fructose. It is generally derived from a beneficial strain of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and then purified to be used either by itself or as a part of a multi-enzyme formula. Combined with other carbohydrates, it enhances the overall digestion of starch, sugar and other carbohydrates.
Invertase's ability to break down (hydrolyze) the bond between fructose and glucose makes it a vital part of the digestion of complex sugars into blood sugar (glucose) which can be used as a ready fuel source by the body. It is also known as beta-fructofuranosidase and may be listed under this name on some product labels and scientific literature.
Invertase is one of the essential enzymes nature uses to help us digest sugars. Commonly found in bee pollen and yeast sources, invertase plays a key role not only in digestive processes, but also, and perhaps more importantly, in overall human disease prevention, physical rejuvenation and anti-ageing processes. As we age, we have less access to this natural enzyme, resulting in a reduced ability to extract the vital nutrients from the food we eat. It can also slow our digestive process, as sugars and starches are such a big part of most American diets. And, while some forms of sugar and carbohydrates are good for the body, they cannot be absorbed or digested well without the help of the invertase enzyme.
It is also created naturally by bees, who use its ability to hydrolyze the sugars in raw nectar to create the delicious honey that we eat. Honeybees produce massive amounts of the enzyme as it breaks the bond between glucose and fructose, adding hydrogen and hydroxide. In contrast to many other enzymes, invertase has the distinct ability to remain active within a wide range of pH levels.
The Health Benefits of Invertase
1. Natural Immune Booster
Enzymes found in honey, such as invertase have been studied for their metabolic activity. Studies done on asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) found that high invertase activity found in the top portion of asparagus spears might be related to the high metabolism occurring in this portion.
2. Antioxidant Support
Invertase has many antioxidant properties, and it is a powerful agent against harmful organisms. These two aspects allow it to aid in the defense against of bacterial infestations and gut fermentation due to oxidation. In Ancient India, raw honey was often used in patients with a weak heart. It was known to kill off bacteria and reduce intestinal ailments. It was also used for its hygroscopic (moisture-retaining) properties, and its ability to pull moisture out of the body, causing bacterial infestations to subside. Invertase is one of these key elements of the enzymatic support found in honey.
Because invertase creates pre-digested simple sugars, it helps reduce stomach toxicity, in that sugars do not remain in the stomach long enough to create toxic fermentation. Fermentation is what causes bacteria and disease to build up in the digestive tract. In this way, invertase helps protect the body from ulcers, as well as many other digestive diseases.
4. Naturally Toxic to Harmful Organisms
Again, in honey, enzymes such as invertase show the ability to turn glucose into natural hydrogen peroxide.
5. Natural Respiratory Support
Enzymes including invertase have been shown to help reduce colds, flu and other respiratory infections. One European study on 18,000 patients found that honey drastically helped upper respiratory tract infections such as bronchitis, asthma and allergies.
6. Cancer Support
Some medicinal studies also show that the invertase enzyme may exhibit some chemotherapeutic properties. Research done in Australia and Japan have found that the enzymes in honey helped support patients with advanced cases of both bone and stomach cancer. In some cases, the cancers even went into regression. Currently, enzyme therapy is being used as a vital component of many natural cancer therapies. European researchers reported, "Studies showed that enzyme therapy can reduce the adverse effects caused by radiotherapy and chemotherapy. There is also evidence that, in some types of tumours, survival may be prolonged and that the beneficial effect of systemic enzyme therapy seems to be based on its potential to reduce redness and swelling."
How to Read the Units of Measurement for Invertase
Carbohydrases such as invertase measure the hydrolysis of carbohydrates. One SU (Sumner Unit Invertase/Sucrase) is the FCC assay of measurement, whereby one Sumner Unit is the quantity of enzyme that will convert 1 mg of sucrose to glucose and fructose in 5 minutes. The FCC notation stands for Foods Chemical Codex, and is a division of USP (United States Pharmacopeia). It sets standards for ingredients. In the case of enzymes, FCC is a standard assay used to accurately determine the activity of enzymes. The current compendium is FCC VI
Where Can I Find The Best Source of Invertase?
The product VeganZyme® contains a 100% vegan form of Invertase produced by the natural fermentation process of Saccharomyces cerevisae. It comes from all vegetarian, non-GMO sources, is kosher certified, gluten free, contains no animal product and is completely suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
VeganZyme is the most advanced full-spectrum systemic and digestive enzyme formula in the world and is free from fillers and toxic compounds. This formula contains digestive enzymes which help digest fats (lipids), sugars, proteins, carbohydrates, gluten, fruits and vegetables, cereals, legumes, bran, nuts and seeds, soy, dairy and all other food sources.
VeganZyme may also be used as a systemic enzyme blend to break down excess mucus, fibrin, various toxins, allergens, as well as excess clotting factors throughout your body.
- Hubert Schiweck, Margaret Clarke, Gunter Pollach. Sugar. Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. 2007 April 15. DOI: 10.1002/14356007.a25_345.pub2.
- Kelly Joyce Neff. The healing power of honey: from burns to weak bones, raw honey can help. Natural News. 2007 January 26.
- N. Benkeblia, N. Yoshida, Y. Ooi, T. Nagamine, S. Onodera, N. Shiomi. Variations of carbohydrate content and invertase activity in green and white asparagus spears- effects of spear length and portion. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 776:459-464.
- Dale Kiefer. Promoting optimal nutrition with digestive enzymes. Life Extension Magazine. 2008 January.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.