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  • Above Health Nutrition

Healing the Root Cause of Fatigue

Let’s talk about energy. Feeling energized feels like a luxury today. So many of my clients have struggled for years with low energy, chronic fatigue or brain fog with the excuse that it was a normal byproduct of aging or only a result of their sleep or busy lives. Now energy has a lot to do with sleep and burning the candle at both ends, but many of my clients would continue to feel drained even after a full night's sleep or in periods of their lives that felt less jam packed.

I am here to tell everyone that if you feel chronically drained of energy, experience brain fog regularly or are just ready to wake up feeling refreshed for once - that there is more you can do than just wait for life to slow down.

Let's dive into what is the root cause of fatigue and how healing our gut can play a major role in healing our energy issues!

Fatigue is mostly identified with being chronically tired BUT it can also present itself as:

  • Headaches

  • Dizziness

  • Muscle soreness

  • Moodiness

  • Appetite loss

  • Brain fog

  • Lack of concentration

  • Weakened immune system

  • Slow healing

If you find that you struggle with any of the above symptoms more regularly, it may be time to look deeper at your body’s greatest energy generator: the mitochondria.

Mitochondria Crash Course

If there is one thing you took away from high school bio class it is that “the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell” which is all true, but mitochondria have even more impact on our body beyond just energy! Each cell has 1,000-10,000 mitochondria, and the body relies on the energy produced from the mitochondria to carry out complex processes such as digestion, brain and cognitive function, metabolic regulation, cell regeneration, hormone production and immunity.

The structure of the mitochondria is important for its function. Mitochondria have two outer membranes or protective shells that determine what gets in and what gets out. The entry and exit of nutrients, vitamins and other compounds is critical for the optimal function of the mitochondria - this is an area where we can see issues with the function of the mitochondria, but more on that in a minute. The result of much of the mitochondria’s work is to produce energy in the form of ATP - a key compound that determines the amount of energy you as a person experience and ultimately if you are thriving as a human or just getting by on fumes.

What mitochondria do for you:

  • Produce pure water for your cells (part of energy production & hydration!)

  • Aid in detoxification (taking out the trash in the body)

  • Stimulate cell death or apoptosis (this is a key immune function that protects dysfunctioning cells from dysregulating such as cancer cells)

  • Fight pathogens and infections

  • Carry out cell signaling, which is vital for immune function and cell death

  • Produce heat

  • Repair DNA

What causes damage to mitochondria? Mitochondrial function can be impacted by:

  • Oxidative stress (fancy word for inflammation)

  • Environmental toxins

  • Pathogens and parasites

  • Medications and over-the-counter medications

  • Inflammatory foods

Today’s modern world can damage and decrease the function and number of our mitochondria. Damaged mitochondria can then lead to challenges in energy production, immune function and gut healing! The health of our mitochondria are one of the most important foundations of our gut health and whole body health.

Now that we have talked about how important mitochondria are for health, how do we support mitochondria?

The number one strategy to support mitochondria are to support our drainage pathways!

Why are our drainage pathways SO important for mitochondrial health?

Our drainage pathways are key for the physical removal of waste from our body, this includes waste such as environmental toxins and other waste products that when not continually removed from the body can damage cells like the mitochondria. Drainage is a key system that must be flowing to reduce waste burden to the body and promote optimal health of our mitochondria, our energy and our gut. Our drainage systems can become congested, similar to how a drain may become congested. This congestion and inability to clear waste can lead to damage to the mitochondria and can drive symptoms like FATIGUE and gut problems!

Support the drainage pathways!

In order to robustly support the mitochondria and heal fatigue, we must support our drainage pathways!

Want to learn more about supporting your drainage pathways?!

Join our Drainage System Training on November 15th! We will teach you exactly what you need to do to get this system functioning again in this free training so you can heal your gut, heal your mitochondria and finally eliminate those frustrating energy, skin and brain fog symptoms once and for all!

Eating optimal calories

In order for the mitochondria to carry out all its own functions and provide the greater body with energy, it needs its own energy. The mitochondria need to take IN energy through calories. First and foremost, our mitochondria are fueled by the foods we eat, we have to eat energy in the form of calories, carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats to power the mitochondria. So making sure meals that are packed with healthy fats, fiber, protein, and whole food carbohydrates like starchy vegetables to fuel your mitochondria.

Minerals and electrolytes

Minerals and electrolytes are vital to mitochondrial health.

Electrolytes like sodium, potassium and magnesium, are charged compounds that help the mitochondria to absorb needed nutrients and communicate with the environment around it. Electrolytes control what gets into the mitochondria and its communication with the greater body - a very important part of the mitochondria’s function.

Focusing on foods rich in minerals/naturally occurring electrolytes like seafoods such as salmon, meats such as liver, leafy greens, fruits, and starchy vegetables will give your body the electrical charges needed to help the mitochondria communicate with the body effectively.

Bone broth is one of our favorite mineral dense and protein rich foods that we love to use to power up our mitochondria.

Mineral Rich Bone Broth


  • 2-3 lbs organic chicken, beef or fish bones

  • 1 onion, quartered

  • 2 carrots, roughly chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped

  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar to help extract minerals from the bones

  • High quality salt like Redmond Real Salt (season the broth right before you drink it, not during the cooking process)

Optional Ingredients to boost flavor and minerals:

  • 1 cup fresh parsley

  • 1 cup mushrooms

  • ½ fresh rosemary

  • ½ cup fresh oregano

  • 1 tbs turmeric

  • 2 tbs black peppercorn

  • 5-10 fresh garlic cloves

  • ¼ cup fresh ginger


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place bones on pan and roast for one hour or till browned.

  • Place bones, remaining ingredients and your optional ingredients, except fresh herbs and salt, in a 6 quart stock pot or crock pot cover with a gallon of filtered water.

  • Heat the broth slowly and once the boil begins, reduce heat to its lowest point, so the broth is simmering

  • After the first hour, skim the impurities that float to the surface with a fine-mesh skimmer and discard. (Grass-fed and organic bones will have less impurities)

  • About 10 minutes before finishing the stock, add fresh herbs like parsley. This will impart additional mineral ions to the broth.

  • Beef broth/stock: 48-72 hours.

  • Poultry broth/stock: 24 hours.

  • Fish broth: 8 hours.

  • Remove from heat, strain and let cool. When cool enough, store in a gallon size glass jar in the fridge for up to 5 days or freeze for later use.

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