Studies have shown that almost one-third of adults report feeling fatigue.Twenty Four percent of patients report that their fatigue is a major health problem. Many scientists believe that one cause of fatigue is mitochondrial dysfunction.
Mitochondria are responsible for energy production within the cells. The mitochondria are also called the “powerhouse of the cell”, and are responsible for generation of adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP). ATP is the chemical energy in the cell. When the mitochondria are not functioning properly, this leads to a decrease in ATP production and this causes fatigue.
Proper mitochondrial function is essential for optimal energy production. As cells age, they lose their ability to produce the needed amount of ATP. As we age, the mitochondria work less efficiently and this inevitably leads to fatigue. Aging also increases the production of damaging free radicals in the mitochondria. Cells have several antioxidant enzymes to prevent free radical damage; however, these enzymes decrease with age. Research has also shown that the loss of muscle mass and function seen with aging is associated with mitochondrial damage in muscle cells.
Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, coronary artery disease, chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), fibromyalgia, diabetes, and many others are associated with mitochondrial dysfunction. However fatigue, in particular, is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction. Studies have also shown that supplementing mitochondrial nutrients has helped patients suffering from chronic fatigue.
So mitochondrial support has been shown to increase ATP, which is the key to all energy production in the body. It also combats the damage done by free radicals. While there are a number of nutrients shown to improve various aspects of mitochondrial function, there are seven nutrients that have been found to be especially effective and act synergistically to improve mitochondrial function. These seven nutrients are L-carnitine, lipoic acid, N-acetyl cysteine, succinic acid, EDTA, plus D-ribose, and Coenzyme Q10.