We all need energy to achieve anything in life. This could be physical, spiritual or mental energy. Even if you are physically strong, it does not necessarily guarantee emotional or spiritual strength and the any other way around. However, there is an overlap in the sense that when you are emotionally stressed out, it also tapped your spiritual and physical energy.
The above means, in broad strokes, that nerve cells as well as every other cell in your body need energy, not only for physical functions, but also for mental and spiritual work. It is interesting that all cells, regardless of their function and structure, have the same organelle to create energy. The name of this structure is the mitochondria and according to many physiologists, it determines cell health and consequently, general health of any organism.
So, the question becomes, “What could we do from a nutrition standpoint to optimize the function of the mitochondria?
Apart from the regular healthy, balanced diet free from pesticides, herbicides and preservatives as countlessly discussed already, there are three nutrients which specifically promote mitochondrial health:
§ D-Ribose which is a sugar, distinguishes itself from other sugars. Although it has a caloric value, it only serves as a building block of ATP, and will not be converted to fat. According to the scientific literature, D-Ribose is beneficial to our health in several different ways:
o It helps with chronic fatigue
o Helps protect cells against oxidative stress during advanced ischemic heart failure
o It plays a role as an anti-oxidant during exercise, specifically weight training and extreme endurance sports
o It also could help relieve the discomfort of restless leg syndrome
§ Raw cacao which is made by cold-pressing un-roasted cacao beans while cocoa is made by using heat to extract the nutrients. Both these processes keep the living enzymes in the cacao/cocoa while removing the fat (cacao butter). According to science, Cacao/cocoa supports the body in several ways:
o For a long time, cacao was used to support all kinds of illnesses such as mental fatigue and exhaustion
o It enhances immune system
o Protection of nerve cells
o It has anti-inflammatory properties
o It is cardio protective
§ CoQ10 is a nutrient, naturally made in our bodies and not commonly found in food. Its main function is as an anti-oxidant. As we age, our ability to manufacture CoQ10 diminishes. Its production is suppressed by the use of statin drugs, while it is depleted during extreme aerobic exercise. Under these conditions, you could benefit to use CoQ10 as a supplement. There is scientific proof that it acts in the following ways:
o It is anti-inflammatory
o It has anti-oxidative properties
o It increases stamina