Best Ways to Boost Your Mitochondria for Energy (Part 1)

 

 

Now, more than ever, it’s time to dump the sugary energy drinks and get that energy boost without a caffeine crash. Fuel the powerhouse of your cells with an energy boosting lifestyle and you’ll feel the long-lasting effects of clean energy, healthy immune system, and metabolism today, tomorrow, and years to come.

In this part:

  • Why now is it important to have healthy mitochondria?
  • What Are Mitochondria? How Do Mitochondria Give You Energy and Help Your Immune System? 
  • What Happens To Your Health When You Have Damaged Mitochondria?
  • How Can You Support Mitochondria Function Naturally?
  • Science-based Detox Tips for Better Mitochondria and Better Immune Health.
  • Exercise And Sleep to Beat Fatigue.

Subscribe to our feed and you’ll be the first to know about our followup post: the best mitochondria supplements for energy. 

Your Immune System And Mitochondria Need A Break From Typical “Energy Drinks”

The Covid-19 pandemic has shown us that there has never been such an important time to take charge of your health. It’s easy to stick with the same old habits, thinking everything's fine, but that’s the kind of thinking that got us in this situation: America is the hardest hit by Covid-19, and it has a lot to do with the health Americans are willing to settle with. I’m here to tell you that there is a way out of this: Resync is here to help you live a healthier life.

We want to give you the knowledge and the tools for better physical energy and more peace of mind. When you know what to do to stay healthy and build resilience, it’s all the easier to stay on that path to lasting change.  

“Energy drinks” are full of sugar, caffeine, preservatives, colorings, and ingredients that just don’t work, and should never be part of your energy fuel.  

With a list like that, where do we even begin? 

  • How about the link between sugar and inflammation, cancer, diabetes, weight gain, and imparied immune health? 
  • The caffeine spike followed by the afternoon slump. 
  • How additives alter your metabolism and set you up for long term health effects?
  • How about the negative effect each of these have on your immune system?

I never want inflammation and a poor immune system to hold me back, but especially not during a pandemic and upcoming flu season. I do not think you want that either. 

This is one reason why Resync is rolling out a ready to drink beverage, so you can grab your health and go forward with your day knowing you’re doing the best thing possible for your heart health and immune system. If you’re wondering “is there an energy drink that is good for you?”, well, we have your answer!

So, there is no better time than now to ditch the “energy drinks”, say no to the sugar and the additives, and stick with ingredients that are proven to enhance your energy at the cellular level. I’m talking about science-based strategies to save your immune system and improve your mitochondria.  Let’s put the brakes on our emotion-driven, fear-based decisions and instead liberate our health and live with peace of mind with the right knowledge.

If you don’t want the science, and you just want to know what to do for optimal mitochondrial health, just skip to the end for the takeaways, we won’t judge ; )

 

Why Are Mitochondria Important?

You can go without food and water for a while, but you cannot go without oxygen for more than a few minutes. Your body can store calories, but your mitochondria - the parts of your cells that make energy - need a constant supply of oxygen to be able to keep pumping out energy you use to move through life.

Mitochondria Give You Energy

It’s a cliche by now to say that your mitochondria are the powerplants of your cells. It is true, but they do so much more. You’ve used the phrase “burn fat” or “burn calories”? The chemical reaction of a burning fire is the same one your mitochondria harness to create fuel for your cells.  Carbon molecules are broken apart, oxygen is consumed, and CO2 and H2O are made in the process of harnessing energy. That energy goes to regenerate spent energy units into energetically active ATP - the dollar that your cells use to buy work.

The takeaway here is: how much ATP your mitochondria can produce affects how you feel when you wake up everyday and how much energy you have moving through your day. Pay attention to your mitochondria and the health of your cells will follow.

Oxygen Is Essential For Mitochondria

Oxygen has profound effects on cognitive function, physical performance, general fatigue, and energy. Oxygen doping in competitive sports is banned because of the clear advantage it provides. Deep breathing can improve fatigue and your mood. Look at how difficult it is to think clearly at high elevation where oxygen is sparse. Everywhere you look, it is clear that getting enough oxygen is crucial for you to be able to function your best.

Oxygen is absolutely critical for your mitochondria to do their work. Even if you can’t live without it, it becomes inherently dangerous to your cells when it’s being run through your mitochondrial machinery. Similar to a fire, atomic embers called “free radicals” pop out everywhere in that calorie-burning reaction. To contend with that free radical damage, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories are concentrated here.

What Else Do Mitochondria Do?

Mitochondria do more than just create energy for you.  Making sure these other functions are also running smoothly can keep your mitochondria from being overburdened.

The list of other functions is long and growing:

  • Oxidative stress control - oxygen is a double edged sword: it is essential for life, but when it leaks from the mitochondria it causes damage. Mitochondria regulate your cells ability to take the heat when you need more energy fast.
  • Cell death - healthy mitochondria make sure your old cells die in a way that doesn’t lead to inflammation or dysfunction, which is essential for a long and healthy life. 
  • Heat (“Thermogenesis”) - when you need to burn through extra calories or generate heat, your mitochondria can release energy as heat instead of making ATP.
  • Insulin control, which explains why dysfunctional mitochondria are a hallmark of diabetes.
  • Calcium signaling in mitochondria is used to conduct signals in your nerves and regulate energy through your body.

What Do Damaged Mitochondria Do To Your Health?

These roles point to how important your mitochondria are for your cells to maintain normal function. It’s no wonder that mitochondrial dysfunction is a key piece of major chronic diseases. Diabetes, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, dementia, neurodegenerative diseases, GI conditions, mental illness, chronic fatigue, and unhealthy aging all share dysregulated mitochondria (citation).

Dysfunctional and defective mitochondria have a number of negative effects. According to Kiran Krishnan, CSO a research microbiologist, through low mitochondria numbers, low mitochondrial function, and/or an imbalance of oxidative stress, poor mitochondria directly lead to fatigue, cell degeneration, DNA defects, unchecked growth, and dysfunctional cellular function.

So if you’re wondering, “Why do I have low energy? Why am I so fatigued?”  You might want to look into how well your mitochondria are supported!

Think of all the roles mitochondria have. Neuron function affects your cognitive abilities. Muscle function determines how you move through the day. ATP production dictates how much energy you have day to day. 

The bottom line is that your ability to turn calories and oxygen into energy depends on the health of your mitochondria.

 

 

How Can You Support Mitochondria Function Naturally?

For the best energy, you need the best mitochondria, in the best number, with enough of the right nutrients to make sure they can handle anything you throw at them. You want to be able to get more oxygen and also support your body’s use of it.

It’s a big topic, so just like our blog series on supporting your glutathione function, we’re going to parse this out into two posts. Subscribe to our feed for our next post on energy supplements for mitochondrial function, but here we’re going to focus on holistic mitochondria support.

How to Detoxify for Better Energy

Toxins can burden your liver and kidneys, forcing your metabolism to focus on handling these toxins rather than efficiently creating energy from food. Toxins also raise free radicals, thus damaging mitochondria and paving the way for fatigue, memory loss, and other negative side effects. 

The solution is not another fad weight loss diet that leaves your New Year’s resolution collecting dust come February. Here we’re talking about evidence-based ways to lower your exposure to dangerous toxins. (If you do want to learn more about detox diets, check out our new year’s post Detox Dilemma: How To Make A Detox Plan That Delivers In 2020). 

How to Detoxify Heavy Metals

Heavy metals like lead, cadmium, mercury, and arsenic cause wide-reaching damage. They block normal cellular function by slowing down enzyme activity. They cause oxidative damage, so you’ll want to also support your innate antioxidant defense system with the tips in the “oxidation and inflammation” section of our website.

The typical medical approach to metal and mineral overexposure is what’s known as “chelation therapy”, which uses antioxidants with mineral-binding capability to help clear tissues of dangerous levels of metals. Chelation therapy must be medically supervised and carries side effects. Whenever possible, it’s best to get rid of metals before they build up toxic levels.

Certain minerals compete with heavy metals for absorption.  If you’re getting heavy metals through your diet, one possibility is adding in more zinc, copper, or selenium to your diet to limit how much the other metals are absorbed.  This method is risky since those minerals can also build up to toxic levels as well.

Similarly, you can consume phytate-rich and oxalate-rich foods. Phytate or phytic acid is an anti-nutrient common in whole grains, beans, and legumes that binds to metals and limits their absorption. Buckwheat, rice bran, whole grains, spinach, rhubarb, and other greens that cause a fuzzy feeling in your mouth when you eat a lot of them are common sources of oxalates. 

In the case of mercury, additional selenium may help manage the negative effects of mercury overconsumption. The research makes it clear though, that this will only work on the metals that you are currently eating ー not the ones that have already built up in your system.

How to Detoxify Chemicals for Better Energy and a Better Immune System

Synthetic and harmful natural chemicals are used in food processing, agriculture, manufacturing; they’re in the air we breath and materials we touch. The plasticized world in which we live exposes us to endocrine disrupting hormones almost constantly.

These chemicals impair your mitochondria, they hurt your immune system, and they can catch up with your health decades down the road.

Because your body’s detox mechanisms are generalized, they are often able to handle environmental toxins. Some toxins are so unique that the millions of years of development humans have undergone didn’t prepare our bodies for these chemicals that can stay in your body forever. 

Liver detoxification strategies that boost your antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and chemical detoxification systems are recommended for getting rid of plastic molecules, pesticides, and pollution.  Some of the best include:

  • Isothiocyanates that come from glucosinolates in dark green veggies of the cabbage family; they’re particularly high in broccoli sprouts.
  • Tannins and other phytochemicals in bitter plant parts get your detoxification pathways working in overdrive.
  • Polyphenols in whole foods, especially in herbs, spices, citrus, and berries.
  • Many others, see the publicly available article by Hodges and Minich (2015) for a comprehensive overview.

Contaminants in Water

You may not have heard of deuterium, but it could be something you want to pay attention to. Deuterium is a form of water that has an extra neutron, giving it its nickname “heavy water”. It occurs as a natural chemical equilibrium reaction in water, and is concentrated at about 150 parts per million, or .015%. 

Deuterium can be as high as 6000 ppm in tap water.  This is nowhere near the amount needed to poison you, but research suggests that it could lead to symptoms with a hard-to-pinpoint cause. Research published in the journal Nature shows that deuterium water causes stem cells to turn into white fat cells, which are implicated in the obesity epidemic, rather than brown fat cells, which are a marker of good metabolic health. Interestingly, on the flip side Deuterium depleted water was able to stimulate more metabolically active brown fat cells. 

Besides this, epidemiological studies seem to show that areas with high levels of deuterium also have high rates of depression, and the lab work shows that deuterium messes up serotonin metabolism. All that said, the research here is limited and some even points to beneficial effects of heavy water

Water is a carrier of all kinds of toxins, ones that we know have definite negative effects on your health and immune system. The important takeaway here is that you should know where your water comes from, choosing tap water is a gamble with your health. Besides this, make your water work for you with the right electrolytes and trace minerals so that your body is actually able to use what you drink.

 

 

Exercise And Sleep to Beat Fatigue

Just two weeks (8 15-minute sessions) of high intensity interval training is enough to start improving your mitochondria. With such a short turnaround time, there’s no excuse to not hit the gym!

But, you know how difficult it can be to get amped up to exercise sometimes. Just thinking about how sore you’re about to be is enough to make you want to pull the covers tight and stay in bed. 

Let’s not kid ourselves, the pain after an intense workout is a clear sign of inflammation - so how does something that very obviously creates damage also lead to better mitochondrial health? 

Let's break this down. Exercise leads to oxidative stress in the short term. But over the long term, exercise leads to higher glutathione, better antioxidant status, and healthier mitochondria no matter your age. Compared to short term exercise, being sedentary leads to lower antioxidant status. So what’s going on here? Would you be better off not damaging your muscles in the first place?

The reason why exercise can lead to better antioxidative capacity is in a principle called hormesis.

Hormesis is the idea that “a little bit of a bad thing can have overall positive effects”. It’s when something that causes initial damage creates a positive response that more than accounts for that first damage. Supercompensation is another term for it on the training field; Wolff’s law; resilience; evolution; allostasis ー it goes by many names. This is how your body positively adapts to damage. 

No exercise, no recovery = no adaptation, defunct mitochondria. Gives you some perspective on the phrase “No pain, no gain”, doesn’t it?

The key here is supporting your entire antioxidant system, a major component of which is your mitochondria. If you want a performance and recovery aid backed by science, you should try one of our products.  Resync Recovery and Resync Collagen are optimized to support your performance.  Clinical research on ingredients in our products shows that Resync may minimize damage done during exercise, speed up your recovery, and improve your tolerance to exercise by increasing how much oxygen you’re able to use. Our clinically formulated patent-pending blend of red spinach extract, beet root powder, and aronia berry extract targets your energy levels like no supplement has ever done before!

Regular exercise - not so intense that your body can’t adapt, and not so much that your body doesn’t have time to recover - will keep your mitochondria healthy throughout life. That translates into better health and more energy to do the things you love to do. Plus, getting regular exercise is a key way to make sure your immune system functions properly.

 

Better Sleep and Better Recovery Improve Mitochondria and your Immune System

I say it all the time: “An under recovered body becomes an injured body.” ™ 

There’s no better recovery than sleep. In fact, it’s one of the best ways to increase the capacity of your mitochondria: across research studies, sleep deprivation leads to mitochondrial dysfunction. And yet, so many people in America put their sleep on the back burner, thinking it will never catch up with them.

The good news is that even if you’re one in three Americans who have trouble sleeping, you can support your antioxidant system and your sleep at the same time.  Our collagen blend provides potent antioxidant activators to help you recover. One serving also gives you about 5 grams of naturally-occurring glycine, which is about the same dose that’s been well researched to improve your sleep (see studies here, here, and here). Try out our nutrient-dense, antioxidant-enriched collagen blend before you go to bed next to see if glycine is the piece of the insomnia puzzle you’re missing! 

Bottom Line

Take time for yourself and you’re taking time for your mitochondria, which could translate into better immune health and living healthier, longer, and more vibrantly.

  • Mitochondria not only provide your energy at the cellular level, but they regulate cell health, inflammation and oxidation, immune function, and insulin control.
  • Toxins harm mitochondria, which can lead to fatigue and other symptoms whose cause is not so easy to pinpoint.
  • An evidence-based way to detoxify heavy metals and harmful chemicals in your diet includes the cabbage family (kale, broccoli sprouts, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, collard greens, etc.), tart tannins (spices and especially the skins of fruit, grains, and legumes), polyphenols in whole foods, especially in herbs, spices, citrus, and berries, and others. Pay attention to the quality of your water, as it is one of the most common sources of toxins in your diet.
  • Exercise, especially HIIT, is one of the best ways to gain more mitochondria.
  • Your exercise does more harm than good if you’re not also paying attention to your recovery and sleep, which are also linked to better mitochondrial health.

If you liked this blog you might also enjoy some of our other articles:

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While other companies try to sell you through clickbait and fake news, we back up what we say with hard data. We believe that when you have the right information, you are empowered to make the best decision possible. That’s why we break down complex science into practical takeaways you can use today. 

If there’s something you want to know more about, let us know by contacting us or getting in touch on social media!

Wishing you the best in your health,

The Resync Team


References

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This content is for general informational purposes only, and does not constitute the practice of any professional healthcare service, INCLUDING the giving of medical advice. No provider-patient relationship is formed. The use of this information, and the materials linked to this content is at the user's own risk. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Users should abide by the advice of their healthcare provider, and should not disregard or delay in obtaining medical advice for any medical condition they may have.

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