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The Importance of Adenosine Triphosphate

May 29, 2010

When describing the basis for human energy, ground zero is adenosine triphosphate or ATP. This enzyme molecule is considered the pure energy engine of life as we know it. It stores what we need to function on practically all levels in the cytoplasm and nucleoplasm of every single cell. Its capability to transform negatively charged atoms into high levels of energy is staggering. ATP is produced two times to the tenth degree in our bodies everyday. Some say ATP consumes an equivalent of a person's body weight daily. It is by far the rock star of our internal microscopic community.

Human Battery

ATP acts a lot like a battery. It stores energy within the cells and then releases it when needed. By several chemical reactions this release is quickly restored as we power up ATP molecules with the food we eat and oxygen we breathe. This process transforms glucose back into recharged, stored energy. Stored ATP is highly concentrated within the cells throughout our bodies, especially our muscles where it works as a primary function for physical activity.

Metabolism

The higher your metabolism the more energy you will produce and the more fat you will burn. ATP is integral in the metabolism function during its transformation stages. It is estimated that approximately 50 percent of the by chemical product from ingested food contributes to the production and maintenance of ATP. Therefore, when it comes to metabolism and losing weight, the better the food we eat the stronger our ATP output becomes and our optimal weight concentration is maintained.

Carbohydrates

It turns out that one of the major sources of ATP production is a diet that is rich in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose, which stores in the muscles as glycogen. When needed it is transformed via glycolis into ATP production. This is why marathon runners often dine on a large pasta meal the night before a race. By morning, there is enough stored glycogen to help with energy production to handle the run.

Fat

Fat is another fuel source for ATP and is often called upon during exercise. The problem is that there is good fat and bad fat. Good fat, such as nuts, avocados and fish, are easily broken down and much more readily available for use than complex fats, such as french fries, butter and dairy. Good fat will enable the body to get more done with less fatigue. In addition, when the brain uses glucose for energy production, fat utilization within the muscles is enacted. Therefore, working with weights in the gym can potentially optimize fat energy resulting in a more sculpted, toned look.

Oxygen

A major source of ATP functioning, beside our food intake, is oxygen. Deep breathing in though the nose and out through the mouth will fire up ATP production and energy release. Too many people are shallow breathers and do not even know it. They gulp air while speaking and eating, essentially starving the cells of adequate oxygen and fully functioning ATP, contributing to fatigue, and surprisingly, potential weight gain.

 

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