The quality of your energy level is governed by your mitochondria.
Through our mitochondria everything is connected in a matrix of energy.
Mitochondria are energy converters and are the powerhouses of a cell.
Mitochondria act much like a digestive system, taking in nutrients (mostly in the form of glucose), breaking them down, and creating adenosine triphosphate (ATP), an energy carrier that is rich in molecules for cellular function.
Your heart muscle cells contain more mitochondria than any other organ in the body – about 5,000 mitochondria per cell. This is because the heart is continually beating and must work harder than any other organ.
You inherit your mitochondria exclusively from your mother. This is because the mitochondria in mammalian sperm are usually destroyed by the egg cell after fertilization. Because mitochondrial DNA is inherited through the mother geneologists are able to trace your maternal lineage far back in time.
Energy Boosting Essential Oils
The mitochondrial biochemical processes of a cell are known as cellular respiration. Frankincense oil/Olibanum (Boswelia frereana and B. carterii) has traditionally been the essential oil most often used to aid cellular respiration and promote energy production.
Numerous other essential oils have been studied for their pharmacological effects and shown effective for boosting energy levels, and helping to alleviate mental exhaustion and burnout including:
- Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) - physical, psycho-emotional fatigue, burnout
- Sweet Basil (Ocimum basilicum) - mental fatigue
- Peppermint (Mentha x piperita)- mental and physical fatigue
- Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi) - mental and emotional fatigue
- Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus radiata) - physical fatigue
- Spearmint (Mentha x spicata) - mental fatigue
- Clary Sage (Salvia sclera) - physical fatigue
- Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha) - physical fatigue, burnout
- Helichrysum (Helichrysum italicum) - physical, psycho-emotional fatigue, burnout
- Lemon (Citrus limon) - mental fatigue
- Marjoram (Origanum majorana) - physical fatigue
- Melissa (Melissa officinale) - mental fatigue
- Rosmary (Rosmarinus officinalis ct verbenone) - mental, psycho-emotional and physical fatigue, burnout
- Ginger Fresh Root (Zingiber officinale) - physical fatigue
- Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens) - physical and psycho-emotional fatigue
- Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) - nervous fatigue
CAUTIONS: Please check individual oils for more information and any cautions.
Ways to Increase Mitochondrial Function
You increase your energy production during aerobic exercise. In fact, most of the energy your muscle cells need for activity is supplied by the mitochondria.
One of the key benefits of exercise and weight training is that you develop more and better functioning mitochondria.
Another way to create new and better mitochondria is through simple water fasting. Fasting not only generates new mitochondria, but also stimulates autophagy.
Autophagy is a natural, self-cleaning process in which dysfunctional or damaged mitochondria can break down and die-off. Recycling of molecules and regeneration of mitochondria occurs at the cellular level, reducing the likelihood of the body contracting some disease, as well as prolonging its lifespan.
The greatest effect of autophagy occurs between 24-48 hours. However, even shorter intermittent fasts of 12-18 hours are beneficial.
I fast most days about 18 hours or more. From my evening meal until my first meal of the day is 18 hours. Then, two days a week I fast for 24 hours duration.
Eat a wide variety of whole organic foods, locally grown is best. Eat sufficient amounts of protein rich foods like pasture-raised meat and eggs, and beans to support amino acids and production of glutathione (the mother of all anti-oxidants) that protect your mitochondria. Leafy greens and sulfur-rich vegetables, like garlic, cauliflower and cabbage also help your body produce glutathione. Essential oils have been studied and shown effective for their anti-oxidant effects. Over the past two decades oxidative stress has been the burning topic of interest among biological researchers. We'll discuss the role of essential oils for reducing oxidative stress in an upcoming article.
Supplement food intake with nutrients that protect the mitochondria from oxidative stress and facilitate mitochondrial ATP production, i.e. CQ10, Alpha Lipoic Acid and aromatherapy.
Quit Complex Carbs & Sugar
Reduce or eliminate sugar and grains (which are rapidly converted into sugar) from your diet. Your mitochondria can’t burn sugar fast enough for energy, so it gets stored as fat which creates damaging free radicals, resulting in free radical damage and oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when there is an excess of free radicals in the body's cells.
Take a deeper look into ways to prolong your health and longevity using essential oils.
READ next article in series on Human Longevity - Oxidative Stress - Genesis of Disease Essential Oils to Use.
READ first article in series on Human Longevity - Essential Oils Role.
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