Here are the 5 practical tips to energize your cells and your body that you can implement pretty much right away and the science of each step!
What are mitochondria?
Mitochondria are the powerhouse organelle that help our cells generate energy to carry out their functions. Mitochondria are like a factory that take sugar or glucose directly or converted from food and combines it with oxygen to produce ATP which is the energy currency of our body.
This process is intricate and has many steps, which means there are a few ways to feed the pathways and produce more energy or just do it more efficiently.
Mitochondria dysfunction speeds up the aging process as damaged mitochondria produce more free radicals, which damage mitochondrial DNA, than healthy mitochondria when they produce energy. More healthy mitochondria we have, the more efficient they work. Also, when mitochondria are energized, our immune system is strengthened since mitochondria regulate our immune system. They recognize the virus, turn on the immune system, and supply energy to immune cells.
The 5 practical tips to energize your cells and your body
1, Box Breathing
The first one - is very simple, you can do it anywhere and any time - and that is breathing or breath work. As I said, one of the vital ingredients of generating ATP is oxygen so simply breathing intentionally.
Taking deep nasal breaths that expand your ribcage for 4 counts, holding for 4 counts, exhaling for 4 counts, and holding that for another 4 counts is a popular mindfulness breathing exercise called Box Breathing. It energizes the mitochondria and regulates the nervous system.
2, Time-restricted eating
The second way is to regularly fast or practice time-restricted eating. Research has shown that keeping your food intake to 2-3 main meals within an 8-10 hour window is a great way to repair and restore damaged parts of the cell in a process called autophagy.
By minimizing snacking throughout the day or by fasting for up to 16 hours, you are giving your body time to recover and engage in autophagy, which gets rid of damaged mitochondria so when your next meal is efficiently and effectively used to produce energy.
3, Reduction of refined, nutrient-depleted carbohydrates
The third way to optimize mitochondria function is to avoid refined, nutrient-depleted carbohydrates, such as white breads and pastas, or high-sugar pastries.
These foods can cause insulin spikes and crashes as well as other dysregulations to the inflammatory pathways and hormone cycles that influence mitochondria function.
You can use exercise to add more mitochondria to cells as well as grow the size of your mitochondria.
High intensity interval training or HIIT is very effective at increasing your oxygen intake in the short term and building up muscular endurance in the long term, which in turn yields an increase in the number and size of mitochondria in cells to prepare you for future workouts.
The opposite of energy is not rest. They are both part of the same cycle, in order for you to generate energy, you MUST rest.
This brings us to our final way to promote mitochondria output, which is to regulate your circadian rhythm with deep, restful sleep.
Having a nightly wind-down routine, minimizing sound and light disruptions, and giving yourself enough time to sleep are all ways to help your mitochondria perform at its best the next day.
There you have it, 5 ways to supercharge your mitochondria! Which ways do you find the easiest to incorporate? Let us know in the comments.