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Complementary Medicine - Cam




What Are Star Ratings?

Our proprietary “Star-Rating” system was developed to help you easily understand the amount of scientific support behind each supplement in relation to a specific health condition. While there is no way to predict whether a vitamin, mineral, or herb will successfully treat or prevent associated health conditions, our unique ratings tell you how well these supplements are understood by the medical community, and whether studies have found them to be effective for other people.

For over a decade, our team has combed through thousands of research articles published in reputable journals. To help you make educated decisions, and to better understand controversial or confusing supplements, our medical experts have digested the science into these three easy-to-follow ratings. We hope this provides you with a helpful resource to make informed decisions towards your health and well-being.

3 Stars Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.

2 Stars Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.

1 Star For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

This supplement has been used in connection with the following health conditions:

Used for Why
3 Stars
Cystic Fibrosis
Up to 10,000 IU daily per 2.2 lbs (1 kg) body weight or 500 to 1,000 lipase units per gram of fat consumed in the diet
Learn More

People with CF tend to have insufficient pancreas function . Supplementation with pancreatic enzymes will often lead to improved digestion, especially of fats. The current recommendation for people with cystic fibrosis is to supplement with pancreatic enzymes at meals. Amounts should not exceed 10,000 IU of lipase per day per 2.2 pounds body weight1 or 500 to 1,000 lipase units per gram of dietary fat consumed,2 as larger amounts may damage the large intestine. A double-blind trial found enteric-coated microsphere enzyme preparations to be superior to enteric-coated capsules for reduction of abdominal pain and improvement of digestion.3Because pancreatin is rapidly emptied from the stomach during digestion, people taking these enzymes may obtain better results by spreading supplementation throughout the meal.4

1 Star
Celiac Disease
Refer to label instructions
Learn More

People with celiac disease often do not produce adequate digestive secretions from the pancreas, including lipase enzymes 5 In a double-blind trial, children with celiac disease who received a pancreatic enzyme supplement along with a gluten-free diet gained significantly more weight in the first month than those treated with only a gluten-free diet.6 However, this benefit disappeared in the second month, suggesting enzyme supplements may only be useful at the beginning of dietary treatment.

1 Star
Crohn’s Disease
Refer to label instructions
Learn More

People with Crohn’s disease may be deficient in pancreatic enzymes , including lipase .7 In theory, supplementing with enzymes might improve the nutrient malabsorption that is often associated with Crohn’s disease. However, people with Crohn’s disease considering supplementation with enzymes should consult a doctor.

How It Works

How to Use It

Products that contain lipase also usually contain other enzymes that help digest carbohydrates and protein. In the U.S., pancreatin, which contains lipase, amylase, and proteases, is rated against a government standard. For example, “9X pancreatin” is nine times stronger than the government standard. Each “X” contains 25 USP units of amylase, 2 USP units of lipase, and 25 USP units of proteolytic enzymes. Taking 1.5 grams of 9X pancreatin (or a higher amount at lower potencies) with each meal can help people with pancreatic insufficiency digest food.

Where to Find It

Most of the body’s lipase is manufactured in the pancreas, although some of it is secreted in the saliva, as well. Pancreatin contains lipase along with two other groups of enzymes : proteases and amylase.

Possible Deficiencies

People with pancreatic insufficiency and cystic fibrosis frequently require supplemental lipase and other enzymes. In addition, those with celiac disease 8 or Crohn’s disease 9 and perhaps some people suffering from indigestion 10 may be deficient in pancreatic enzymes including lipase.


Interactions with Supplements, Foods, & Other Compounds

At the time of writing, there were no well-known supplement or food interactions with this supplement.

Interactions with Medicines

As of the last update, we found no reported interactions between this supplement and medicines. It is possible that unknown interactions exist. If you take medication, always discuss the potential risks and benefits of adding a new supplement with your doctor or pharmacist.
The Drug-Nutrient Interactions table may not include every possible interaction. Taking medicines with meals, on an empty stomach, or with alcohol may influence their effects. For details, refer to the manufacturers’ package information as these are not covered in this table. If you take medications, always discuss the potential risks and benefits of adding a supplement with your doctor or pharmacist.

Side Effects

Side Effects

At the time of writing, there were no well-known side effects caused by this supplement.


1. Littlewood JM, Wolfe SP. Control of malabsorption in cystic fibrosis. Paediatr Drugs 2000;2:205–22.

2. Borowitz DS, Grand RJ, Durie PR. Use of pancreatic enzyme supplements for patients with cystic fibrosis in the context of fibrosing colonopathy. Consensus committee. J Pediatr 1995;127:681–4.

3. Vyas H, Matthew DJ, Milla PJ. A comparison of enteric coated microspheres with enteric coated tablet pancreatic enzyme preparations in cystic fibrosis. A controlled study. Eur J Pediatr 1990;149:241–3.

4. Taylor CJ, Hillel PG, Ghosal S, et al. Gastric emptying and intestinal transit of pancreatic enzyme supplements in cystic fibrosis. Arch Dis Child 1999;80:149–52.

5. Patel RS, Johlin FC Jr, Murray JA. Celiac disease and recurrent pancreatitis. Gastrointest Endosc 1999;50:823–7.

6. Carroccio A, Iacono G, Montalto G, et al. Pancreatic enzyme therapy in childhood celiac disease. A double-blind prospective randomized study. Dig Dis Sci 1995;40:2555–60.

7. Hegnhoj J, Hansen CP, Rannem T, et al. Pancreatic function in Crohn’s disease. Gut 1990;31:1076–9.

8. Patel RS, Johlin FC Jr, Murray JA. Celiac disease and recurrent pancreatitis. Gastrointest Endosc 1999;50:823–7.

9. Hegnhoj J, Hansen CP, Rannem T, et al. Pancreatic function in Crohn’s disease. Gut 1990;31:1076–9.

10. Suarez F, Levitt MD, Adshead J, Barkin JS. Pancreatic supplements reduce symptomatic response of healthy subjects to a high fat meal. Dig Dis Sci 1999;44:1317–21.

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