So how are mitochondria and brain health linked?

Very intricately indeed! Neurons which are nerve cells which send messages all around our body, use a lot of energy to do so, and the mitochondria provide the energy for this. So if mitochondria become damaged or dysfunctional (not working properly), there can be slowing down or limited messages getting through.

In terms of what this might look like for a person, symptoms could include:

  • brain fog
  • reduced endurance for tasks that previously were easy
  • lack of motivation
  • lethargy or fatigue
  • depression
  • inability to concentrate

All of these symptoms are suggestive of mild to moderate neuroinflammation.

The brain can become inflamed (aka neuroinflammation) from many causes including:

  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Stress
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Ageing – yup we’re all at risk of it!
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Pro-inflammatory diet – think junk food
  • Depleted antioxidant reserves – not enough colourful veg and fruits
  • Inflammatory bowel disease

So what can be done for a brain on fire?

I would start with a general overview of:

  • Maximise: Exercise – specific to the individual
  • Minimise: Alcohol and Stress
  • Prioritise: Sleep and good nutrition

Then tailor a program specific to an individual person and their contributing factors.