As new research helps us understand the aging process better, we are able to find ways that we can intervene in this process and increase our healthspan. When looking at ways that we can make a measurable impact on our healthspan, we must start at the mitochondria and cellular level. You may know the mitochondria as the “powerhouse of the cell.” The mitochondria produces energy which keeps us running. Our muscles and organs all depend on the energy that mitochondria produce for proper function. Unfortunately, as we age, our mitochondria may slow and not work as efficiently as they once did. Knowing how important the function of our mitochondria is, what can we do to improve its function as we age? Understanding the compounds that support mitochondria function is the first place to start.
One compound that supports mitochondria function is Urolithin A, which is produced in the gut microbiota when we eat certain foods that contain ellagitannins, compounds found in a variety of fruits and nuts. Research has found that Urolithin A may have positive effects on our cells and mitochondria function. According to Johan Auwerx, biologist and professor, a recent human study on Urolithin A “shows its potential to play an important role in advanced nutritional approaches to improve mitochondrial health through mitophagy and biogenesis, and, as a result, cellular health in humans.” 
Food is medicine, and what we eat contributes to our medical destiny
A food source that contains ellagitannins which turn into Urolithin A in our gut are pomegranates. In addition to its mitochondria and cell support, pomegranates are also full of antioxidants which help protect our body against oxidative damage from free radicals, and vitamin C to keep our immune system strong. There is also research to suggest that pomegranates may help our skin maintain a youthful appearance. A study featured in the National Library of Medicine suggested that the polyphenols found in pomegranates inhibited the degradation of collagen, which are the building blocks of our skin. 
Food is medicine, and what we eat contributes to our medical destiny. InsideTracker is a science based platform that analyzes your body’s data to provide you with a clear picture of what’s going on inside you to offer you science-backed recommendations for positive diet and lifestyle changes. It works. David reduced his harmful LDL by 17% in 4 months by applying the InsideTracker food first recommendations. We continue to use the platform to track our progress every day to help us live a longer, healthier life. AGEIST readers save 25% on all InsideTracker products here.
With pomegranate season approaching, try our delicious Fall Salad recipe below to add the health-promoting fruit into your diet!
Mitochondria-Boosting Fall Salad
- 5 oz organic spinach
- 1 cup pomegranate seeds
- ¼ cup sunflower seeds
- 1 avocado, sliced
- 1 persimmon, sliced
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- 1 tsp sea salt
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- Combine spinach, pomegranate seeds, sunflower seeds, avocado, and persimmons in a large bowl.
- Combine dressing ingredients and pour over salad. Toss well and season to taste.