Three Ways Mitochondria Affect Your Health
Dr. Warner here –
Today I’m talking about mitochondria and the way they can help, or harm, your overall health and well-being.
Keep reading to find out how mitochondrial health impacts wellness + vitality in aging:
Mitochondria exist within every cell you have throughout your entire body. The mitochondrion may be considered as the ‘engine’ of the cell. That is, the mitochondrion manufactures energy for all cellular functions – which is why it is more commonly known as the “powerhouse” of the cell.
Without the energy that all the mitochondria provide, damage to cells most certainly occurs. The energy is made through the electron transport chain and oxidative phosphorylation. Basically, the mitochondria turn things like the food we eat and the air we breathe into usable energy for all cell processes.
Mitochondria exist within human cells and can assist in the alteration or repair of human DNA. However, the mitochondria carry their own DNA as well. The function and modulation of the mitochondrial DNA is extremely important to cell function and thus to the longevity and vitality of any given cell.
Thus, the mitochondria and the mitochondrial DNA is the foundation of vital and healthy aging.
If one wants to age well and have functional longevity with vitality and fun, then one must have awesome mitochondria.
The key to the ‘Golden Years’ and playing hard with grandchildren and children is the mitochondrion.
The electron transport chain converts the energy held within food (calories) into a usable form for cell function. This is usually ATP (adenosine 5’ triphosphate). The synthesis of ATP is the production of ‘cell-fuel’. Perhaps it is better to think of the mitochondria as the refinery or the wind-turbine rather than as the actual engine.
Along with the production of ATP comes the production of the by-product of oxidative phosphorylation unfortunately. These by-products are reactive oxygen species or ROS. These are the damaging ‘free-radicals’ that can destroy most cells and the inner working of the cell.
Each cell or system has feedback loops and functional processes in place to handle the production of ROS after the mitochondria make ATP. By capturing and degrading ROS, the cell can keep them at an optimal level that does not cause damage. If there is an excess of ROS from poor capture and degradation functions, the cells can become dysfunctional. Mitochondria have the ability to manage the ROS properly, but only if it is healthy too.
An increase of ROS’s to levels that the cell cannot manage begins an inexorable downward spiral of more and more free radicals being formed and ultimately leads to the total destruction of that cell. This is why antioxidants help so much in cell function and health. Antioxidants capture and process excess free radicals from the cell environment.
The treatment of secondary mitochondrial dysfunction – mitochondrial dysfunction not caused by genetics but instead dietary or lifestyle choices, aging, and other variables – therefore focuses on the replacement and maintenance of these critical substrates for mitochondrial function.
Learn how the drug metformin can be protective and reduce DNA malformations by clicking here to read our blog post on metformin’s effect on aging.
Vitamins are an essential part of effectively treating mitochondrial dysfunction; vitamin D, E and C are examples. There are minerals necessary for the entire process and include magnesium, phosphate and calcium. There are unsaturated fatty acids necessary and membrane phospholipids. Nutrition and appropriate supplementation are mandatory for optimal mitochondrial health. Therefore, nutrition and appropriate supplementation are mandatory for vitality and function as we all age.
Everyone ages. At Well Theory, we want to help you age gracefully and carry vitality with you through the rest of your life. Maintaining your health at a cellular level is key to maintaining your health for many years to come. Choose the Well Theory Bone & Joint Health Multi to help achieve baseline wellness and promote cellular health.
Dr. Meredith Warner is the creator of Well Theory and The Healing Sole. She is a board-certified Orthopedic Surgeon and Air Force Veteran.
She is on a mission to disrupt traditional medicine practices and promote betterment physically, spiritually and mentally to many more people. She advocates for wellness and functional health over big pharma so more people can age vibrantly with more function and less pain.
At Well Theory, Our surgeon-designed products are FDA Registered and formulated to help people:
- Manage the symptoms of musculoskeletal pain
- Recover vibrantly from orthopedic related surgeries
- Fill the gaps in our daily diets
- Manage pain associated with inflammation
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