Feed Your Mitochondria

I think we all know that veggies are good for us. It’s no secret. But, sometimes when you read or see something in a certain way in a specific context, it just makes it feel more manageable to do. Today, I was reading Alison’s blog over at Mama’s Weeds (she is a fantastic writer and really cracks me up—and I was lucky enough to meet her once!), and she posted this video:

I really liked the message—it was specific. What do our mitochondria do to keep us healthy, and what feeds them best?


I’m gonna use it to set a goal for myself for the next three days (because I’m going to Santa Monica in four days, and I’m sure I won’t be able to do it then!).

Each day, Feed Your Mitochondria (Powerhouses of your cells):

  • 3 cups of green leafies
  • 3 cups of sulfur rich veggies – cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, onions, shallots, mushrooms, asparagus
  • 3 cups of veggies high in flavenoids, polyphenols – beets, carrots, peppers, red cabbage
  • protein- grass fed beef, wild salmon, herring
  • organ meats (once a week) – vitamins, minerals, coq10 (ok, I’ll admit I have beef liver in my freezer, but I’m scared of it…so I included this here, but I don’t know if I’ll actually do it. I have an idea of how to incorporate it, but…I’m still scared, so I might leave this part out).
  • seaweed (once a week) – iodine, selenium

 Will you join me? It’s not so hard, right? I like having a focus! (That reminds me I need to work on this in other areas too…)

News/Notes: My second personal training session was today. It was hard, and I loved it. I did things like ladder drills, jumped on boxes, and slammed a tractor tire with a sledgehammer (and that was really satisfying!). I’m gonna continue my HIIT workouts for the rest of the week, and hopefully while I’m in Cali too. I mean, I can do HIIT on the beach, right?

Tomorrow, if I have time, I’m going to make up a HIIT workout for myself. I shouldn’t say that—I already know I don’t have time! But I want to–so maybe it will be Thursday.

I will make time to work out—even if I’m sore and tired  (I will be). I’ve never had anyone tell me they regretted a workout after it was all done! Reminding myself of that is how I’ll peel myself from my computer for a bit. How do you get yourself to do it when you’re busy or sore or tired?

How is your week so far? 

18 thoughts on “Feed Your Mitochondria”

  1. I saw that video a few weeks ago and loved it. I can definitely do the 3 cups of leafy greens and 1 ea. of the other veggies. I think I will join you and try  to aim for more. Maybe I’ll do it until I go to Florida 🙂

    My Dad eats organ meats and I would always complain how disgusting it is. Think I might have to eat my words and try some the next time my Mom cooks it. I definitely won’t be cooking it the first time I try it. 

  2. I will join you for sure! What a great little challenge!!! No beef liver for me wither though, blechhhhhhhhhhhhh

    I have had sea veggies in my cabinet for a while now and can’t seem to find what to do with them!

  3. I’m not into the organ meats part, and I always eat lots of veggies, but I’ll work on the seaweed part!

  4. oh I’m so glad you watched that video and enjoyed it as much as I did, it is SO moving and inspiring.  I’ve been wondering if there was ANY other place to find CoQ besides LIVER… oy.  I love the way you wrote her list out like this, it does seem very manageable to look at it that way.  Thanks for the shout out and your sweet words too!

  5. i can match you veggie for veggie, but i will leave the liver/organ meat to you, lisa! and i would be scared of it, too!! let us know how cooking that up goes for you! (yes, you put it on the blog so now you have to do it, haha!).
    good luck as you prep for your trip – you’re going to have a great time in california, i just know it!
    my week is speeding along. yesterday was a day where everything i touched was golden -> got so much done at work and at home. it was a really joyous day!
    tire + sledgehammer – i can’t imagine anything more satisfying for de-stressing and venting. need one for home?!

  6. Gina (Candid RD)

    What a fascinating post.  I never really think about my mitochondria….I wish they didn’t like sulfur veggies because those are the worst for me (gas!).  And organ meats? Yikes.  Seaweed, salmon, peppers and carrots I can do.

  7. I was surprised to see asparagus and mushrooms on the “sulfur” list….do those bug you too? I definitely will need to mix in some of those types… I’m so not sure I can do the liver. My mom made some a few weeks ago, and it was truly disgusting (and I only had one bite)…and her house smelled gross for an entire day… Blech… How far will I go for my mitochondria?! Lol.

  8. i am up for it too but i am not sure if the liver part is going to work out for me! need a new challenge anyways.. i am doing a half marathon the coming sunday and then need a new focus!!

  9. I am in!  But not sure when I will start because I need to fit in a trip to Wegmans.  Sounds easy to most, but I actually have to plan that!  Maybe tonight, after the kids are tucked in.  No liver for me.  If I try anything challenging, it will be to add a hard boiled egg to my avacado pudding–and that is tough for me to even write.

  10. Great post!  My only challenge would be the organ meats…they scare me a little too, lol.  If I can use supplements instead I’ll be all set.

    When I don’t feel like working out, I remind myself that once I’m done I have the rest of the day to relax (as much as work can be considered relaxing…but it isn’t strenuous work so that’s why I say relax 🙂 ).  And I will feel so good when I’m done!

  11. Love this post! Thanks for sharing that video too! I’m going to get Tony to watch it too. I think it’s funny, since we’ve been diagnosed with food allergies and intolerances, processed food consumption has really gone down around here. I hate that we have these restrictions, but it’s amazing how much better you feel eating real food! 

  12. I like the idea of feeding my mitochondria.  I have to say that organ meat scares (and has always scared) the crap out of me.  I’ve had it – it was my dad’s favorite (liver and onions) but I never joined in.

  13. Lisa_healthy_diaries

    I could do this if I kept up with my juicing everyday! I don’t think I could actually eat 9 cups of veggies throughout the day. Juicing definitely helps pack more in!
    Also, not sure about organ meats.. My parents eat liver occasionally and I just couldn’t stand the smell of it when she cooked it!

  14. Hey! You won my nunaturals giveaway! Shoot me an email with your address itzyskitchen at gmail dot com

  15. Heck yes I’ll join you!  I need the mitochondria in my legs to be alert and ready to supply me with some ATP for my longer runs! Bring on the leafy greens! 

  16. I LOVE this video, Lisa. Thank you for sharing it. Hearing Dr.Wahl’s story, and seeing her pix, how can you argue her recommendations? And, yes, I’m with you. Actually eat pretty close to this already, with the exception of liver and seaweed (unless you count sushi). You think liverwurst counts? That I can do!  

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