How to Protect Your Immunity, One Cell At a Time
We all know that eating right, getting enough sleep and engaging in physical activity are the keys to living well. But beyond nutrition, rest and exercise, the body is hard at work behind the scenes, executing several other life-supporting processes that contribute to our overall wellness.
All of these internal processes – along with the body’s cells, tissues and organs – require energy. And this energy does not come from your morning espresso – it comes from the mitochondria, also known as the “powerhouse of the cell.” The mitochondria are tiny organelles that exist within nearly all of the 37 trillion cells in the body. They create functional energy from the air that we breathe and the food that we eat to support most of the body’s life-sustaining processes. The mitochondria are powered by an antioxidant that the body makes, CoQ10, which helps support and protect them, as they work diligently to keep our bodies running smoothly. CoQ10 is also responsible for helping to support the body and cells fight against free radical damage.
Therefore, for our bodies to perform at their best, it makes sense to keep our mitochondria healthy.
Sounds simple enough, except that – like everything else in our bodies – mitochondrial function can begin to decline after the age of 30. When these powerhouses slow down, so do we. This can make us feel more fatigued, more vulnerable to illness and it means it may sometimes take us longer to recover from strenuous physical activity.
Taking a CoQ10 supplement is widely recommended by healthcare providers — and the average CoQ10 supplement is readily available at mainstream drugstores and health food stores around the country. But not all CoQ10 supplements are created equal.
Most CoQ10 supplements are too large to fully penetrate the mitochondria’s very secure double membrane, and the majority of it gets absorbed into the bloodstream. Fortunately, there’s a new type of CoQ10 supplement that’s an enhanced form of this special antioxidant, called MitoQ, that is specifically formulated to penetrate the mitochondria thousands of times more effectively than other CoQ10 supplements.
Keeping our mitochondria content is becoming more of a focus for healthcare providers and consumers who want to age well. The mitochondria generate approximately 90 percent of the body’s energy, and it is now recognized that when they are unable to function at their best, it can result in several serious health conditions.
Additionally, there is new evidence to support the relationship between mitochondrial health and our immunity. The immune system is one of the above referenced life-supporting processes that works silently to keep us healthy and well. Like a quiet warrior, its primary role is to identify foreign invaders and destroy them (i.e. bacteria, germs and other pathogens that can pose a harmful threat).
The mitochondria are involved in several significant processes that support the immune system. Specifically, the mitochondria play a role in the development and function of certain immune cells and help regulate immune responses.
To stay well, particularly during a time when the world is dealing with a major health crisis, it’s important to ensure the body has what it needs to function in the most optimal way possible. This means it’s important to nourish and hydrate the body with a healthy diet, obtain adequate mental and physical rest and help ensure that the body’s internal processes keep running smoothly. Supplements like MitoQ can help support and keep the mitochondria happy and healthy, which will help power and support the body for whatever challenge may come our way.
ABOUT DR. MENOLASCINO
Dr. Mark Menolascino is the Medical Director of the Meno Clinic – Center for Functional Medicine, located in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. He has over 35 years of healthcare experience, he has completed Medical School at the University of Nebraska Medical Center then completed Internal Medicine Specialist Training at Banner Health Arizona. He is one of the very few physicians that is Board Certified as an Internal Medicine Specialist, Board Certified in Holistic Medicine as well as Board Certificated in Advanced Hormone Management and Anti-Aging Medicine. He additionally has a Master’s Degree in Pharmacology and Immunology and was a doctoral candidate in the Medical Scientist Program assisting with Clinical Trials of new medications as well as part of the Heart Disease Reversal Team with Dr. Dean Ornish. His medical knowledge is complemented by advanced training and clinical experience in Nutrition, Naturopathic, Chinese Medicine/Acupuncture, Ayurvedic Medicine and Homeopathy. He is the author of a new book The Heart Solution for Women focusing on optimal health for women. Dr. Mark Menolascino has pursued extensive continuing education with over 3,000 Continuing education hours in Integrative Medicine including advanced Cardiovascular Therapies including Heart Disease Prevention, Medical Nutritional Therapy, Male and Female Hormone Bio-identical Therapy including advanced Thyroid and Adrenal Function, Detoxification, and Cancer Prevention. He is a former Professional Athlete with over 10 years experience as a Personal Trainer, Strength Coach for the Husker Power Program as well as a Corporate Wellness Consultant. Dr. Menolascino provides an in-depth and personalized consultation to best assess your health and meet your needs. He helps to develop a unique program of Optimal Wellness based on integrating all of his unique knowledge for a holistic and individualized wellness plan just for you.
JOIN THE WELL COMMUNITY
Sign up to get the latest well insiders stories delivered to your inbox every week.