Your Powerhouse – the Mitochondria
Did you know that the energy that you feel, is produced inside tiny little energy powerhouses that are found inside your cells. Known as mitochondria, these powerhouses must be treated kindly if you want to have an abundance of energy.
Like a power station, your body requires specific fuel (e.g. nutrition, calories, water) in order to produce a specific output i.e. ENERGY. The mitochondria produces 90% of our energy and its fuel comes from the breakdown of proteins, carbohydrates and fats in the digestive system. The starting place for the treatment of fatigue is subsequently ensuring the body is getting the specific nutrients that are needed for each stage of ATP production thus minimizing the factors that damage your powerhouse – the mitochondria.
So here are the top things to investigate and correct if you are feeling flat and fatigued.
- Are you receiving adequate levels of magnesium? Magnesium is vital for blood sugar stabilization and energy production in the mitochondria;
- Are you zinc deficient? Inadequate zinc will decrease the absorption of other nutrients and can produce digestive problems (a zinc test is very useful);
- Is your sleep adequate? Restless or broken sleep can be an obvious cause of fatigue for some people, particularly if stress is also present. People with sleep apnea however, rarely realize they have the problem but know that they are always waking up feeling unrefreshed;
- Iron deficiency. Commonly found in menstruating females who experience heavy bleeding. It also commonly occurs in vegetarians. This is an easily rectified problem with some initial dietary supplementation and diet changes;
- Digestive problems. Inadequate breakdown and utilization of foods and their vitamins and minerals is extremely common. Tests such as a Cellular Health Analysis can actually measure the “quality of your cells” and whether adequate nutrition is being supplied at the tissue level. Problems can occur at various parts of the digestive tract including the stomach, small intestine, large intestine. Tests such as a Urinary Indicans can determine if gut toxicity is present;
- The modern western diet is typically nutrient poor and calorie rich. Although most people do not associate malnutrition with developed countries, it none the less exists. Western malnutrition does not relate to not enough food however, but is a malnutrition that is related to the overconsumption of nutrient poor foods. Eat more vegetables, fruits, meat, fish, dairy, eggs and reduce all grains (don’t worry, you will get plenty of fiber if you are eating plenty of vegetables). A daily multivitamin will help replace some nutrients;
- Gluten intake. The more we learn about gluten, the worse the story gets. Gluten has only been consumed in our diets in large amounts for around 50 years. Prior to this we consumed fresher, unprocessed foods. The problems with gluten are multiple (and I won’t go into them all here), but one of the main links to gluten and fatigue is its affect upon thyroid function. The thyroid gland is responsible for your body’s metabolism. Gluten suppresses thyroid function and generally slows the metabolic processes. Symptoms of low thyroid function (hypothyroidism) include feeling tired and sluggish, weight gain, fluid retention, slow bowels etc,
These are just a few of the very common causes of fatigue. Making some simple changes to what you are currently doing could make all the difference to the way you look and feel
This is an extract from Chapter 1 of How to Increase Energy Naturally.