Ultrametabolism: Turn Calories into Energy: Struggling for Oxygen, Boosting the Furnace


JESUS Calling April 1

I am calling you to a life of constant communion with Me. Basic training includes learning to live above your circumstances, even while interacting on that cluttered plane of life. You yearn for a simplified lifestyle, so that your communication with Me can be uninterrupted. But I challenge you to relinquish the fantasy of an uncluttered world. Accept each day just as it comes, and find Me in the midst of it all.

Talk with Me about every aspect of your day, including your feelings. Remember that your ultimate goal is not to control or fix everything around you; it is to keep communing with Me. A successful day is one in which you have stayed in touch with Me, even if many things remain undone at the end of the day. Do not let your to-do list (written or mental) become an idol directing your life. Instead, ask My Spirit to guide you moment by moment. He will keep you close to Me.

Pray continually.
—1 Thessalonians 5:17

In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
—Proverbs 3:6


Ultrametabolism Chapter 13

Turn Calories Into Energy: Struggling for Oxygen: Boosting the Furnace

Exercise some motivation required

Our example in our lesson was a man who was 50 and he had always struggled with his weight. He had tried everything and his weight had gone up and down for years. He diligently followed Dr. Hyman’s dietary suggestions and lost about 20 pds. With 30 pds left to go, he put him on a special treadmill that measured his metabolic rate while exercising.

Dr. Hyman measured the amount of oxygen he consumed and the amount of carbon dioxide he exhaled while exercising, which gave an indirect measure of how active his metabolism was. Our ability to burn calories is dependent on the health, number, and efficiency of our mitochondria, the little powerhouses that produce energy in each cell. They take the food we eat, combine it with oxygen, and burn it; that is how we make energy. It is the core of our metabolism.

The amount of oxygen we are able to breathe per minute is directly tied to the number of calories we burn per minute. When we breathe more oxygen, we burn more calories.

Dr. Hyman found that John consumed much less oxygen than he should have based on his age, height, weight, and sex. His mitochondria just weren’t burning enough oxygen.

He sent him to an exercise physiologist who taught him a special exercise program called interval training. Interval training is similar to wind sprints we did in high school.

This type training helps the body become more efficient at taking in oxygen, when make the muscle cells produce more mitochondria and makes the mitochondria more efficient. This helps you burn more calories , not only when you are exercising but when you’re at rest as well. It increases your metabolic fire.

After 4 months, John lost 30 more pds and increased his oxygen consumption almost .

30 percent.

Turning Up Your Metabolic Thermostat

How do we avoid getting old and fat? Mitochondria, the powerhouses of our cells.

In our last chapter we learned that oxidative stress is primarily a by product of burning calories and oxygen inside our motochondria to create energy. Dr. Hyman said that oxidative stress is like car exhaust from burning fuel. We have a small amount that GOD designed our bodies to be able to handle but in our day and age, we eat processed foods, are around chemicals and we have more oxidative stress or free radicals than our bodies are able to cover. These free radicals damage mitochondria, leading to impaired energy production, which causes a reduction in your metabolic power and ability to burn calories.

The great news is we can reverse the damage that been done to your mitochondria and turn up our metabolic fire!

How the Mitochondria Work

Mitochondria are the parts of our cells that combine the calories we consume with oxygen and turn this mixture into energy to run everything in your body. A single cell may have anywhere from 200 to 2,000 or more mitochondria. Cells that work hard such as those in the heart, liver, and muscle contain the most. Mitochondria are very important in keeping us alive.

The rate at which mitochondria transform food and oxygen into energy is called our metabolic rate and is determined by:

  1. the number of mitochondria we have
  2. how efficiently they burn oxygen and calories

    The more mitochondria we have and the more efficiently they consume oxygen, the faster our metabolic rate, the easier it is for our body to burn calories, and the more energy we burn.

We have the ability to dramatically influence both of these factors….by EXERCISE!

Get Moving!

Besides eating breakfast, exercise is the only thing that has been correlated with long term sustained weight loss. This is because the BEST way to increase the number of mitochondria in our body and improve the functioning of the ones already there is to exercise. Exercising increases our muscle mass and oxygen intake. By increasing our muscle mass, we increase the number of cells in our body that contains large number of mitochondria Our muscles have one of the highest concentrations of mitochondria.

Increase our oxygen intake, causes our mitochondria to process more oxygen more quickly. When we work out, they work out and they get better at consuming oxygen and this increases our metabolic power.

The calories we burn when not exercising are important too. By increasing the number and function of the mitochondria in our bodies, we increase our ability to burn calories even while we sleep.

Yo Yo Dieters

Yo Yo Dieter can’t lose weight because they lose muscle and gain back fat. Since muscle is much more metabolically active and burns seventy time as many calories as fat cells, losing muscle slows down their metabolism making it easier to gain weight and harder to lose it, even while they eat the same number of calories. Sarcopenia= muscle loss. Sacro=muscle, penia=loss. Although some people are obviously overweight and you expect them to have a high level of fat, others are called “skinny fat people” because they look skinny but have very little muscle. More muscle=more mitochondria, which is central to boosting your mitochondria power.

At 70, you could end up with the same weight as 20 but be twice as fat because your muscle tissue was replaced with fat!…This is metabolic obesity or “skinny fat syndrome. It has the same dangerous consequences as being obese. The more muscle you lose, you lose mitochondria and our metabolism slows.

Fat Genes

Obese people have fewer and more poorly functioning mitochondria than thin people. Interesting study showed that thin people of those with type 2 diabetes have smaller and slower burning mitochondria than other thin people. Those who have genetically smaller or poorer functioning mitochondria are more likely to gain weight and get diabetes.

Diabetes and mitochondrial function are linked, and some scientists say the primary cause of diabetes is damage to the mitochondria. Too many calories, too much sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, high glycemic load or rapidly absorbed carbohydrates, and too many saturated and trans fats all cause insulin resistance, damage the mitochondria and lead to type 2 diabetes. Anything that interferes with your system-oxidants and free radicals, sugar, trans fats, inflammation, the vicious cycle of counterproductive (plastics, , drugs, household chemicals, farm chemicals, lawn pesticides, home pesticides, air toxins, etc that can also damage our mitochondria.

Take Home message: Even though you might have genes that predispose you to insulin resistance and obesity, you can turn off the activity of these genes through exercise. You can also increase your mitochondrial function and and get a metabolic tune up by adopting certain key nutritional principles and taking special supplements that help turn off slow metabolism genes and turn on the metabolism boosting genes.

Here’s 5 Steps to turn up our metabolic power:

  1. Eliminate the causes of mitochondrial damage…too many calories and not enough nutrients and phytonutrients will increase the damage. Solution: eating a nutrient-dense, phytonutrient rich, unrefined, unprocessed, real, whole food diet. This is at the heart of the Ultrametabolism Prescription. Also identify other causes of damage such as thyroid hormone problems, toxins that damage mitochondria such as mercury, chronic infections, anything that causes inflammation (bad kind of oils contribute), and certain medications ( such as statins, that deplete conenzyme Q10, a nutrient import for energy metabolism).
  1. Exercise Intelligently -if we want to heat up the metabolic fire, we need to exercise….do something you enjoy! Something you like to Play at! I like to ride my bicycle, kayak, walk, hike, cut the grass with a push mower, walk my dogs etc. Pick something you enjoy and do it. The key is finding something you love to do and do it! The more vigorous the activity the better, but just getting up and down to turn TV every time you want to change channels can lead to significant weight loss over time, Dr Hyman says.

He says that exercise 30 minutes a day five times a week helps you achieve the most health benefits, but doing that up to 60 minutes five times a week is needed for weight loss….BUT he is going to teach us a shorter, smarter weight to achieve more benefits called interval training.


Leave off the TV and clean the basement!

Use a step counter to track daily physical activity, try to get up to 10,000 steps a day

Suggestions for moving:

  • sit ups or any form of activity in front of the TV
  • walk during your lunch hour
  • walk instead of driving whenever you can
  • take a family walk after dinner
  • walk to your place of worship instead of driving
  • get a dog and walk it
  • join an exercise group
  • do yard work
  • get off the train or bus stop early and walk
  • work around the house
  • bicycle to the store instead of driving
  • go for a half hour walk instead of driving
  • wash your car by hand
  • park further from the store and walk
  • ask a friend to exercise with you
  • exercise indoors with a video if the weather is bad
  • take a walk instead of a coffee break
  • play with your kids 30 minutes a day
  • dance
  • walk briskly at the mall
  • explore new physical activities.
  • Walk /Bike at the walking trail,beside the creek Rails to Trails, Point Mallard.
  • Take stairs at church instead of the elevator
  • when walking go up hills instead of around them
  • Buy a set of hand weights and use them to play “Simon says,” with your kids…you use them, they don’t. Use them as you watch TV

Breathe More to Build Up Your Metabolic Engine: Aerobic Training:

Aerobic training is an important part of your exercise regimen. It increases the oxygen supply to your body, making your mitochondria more efficient at consuming oxygen. This boosts your metabolic engine…anyone remember Kenneth Cooper? Has an exercise place in Dallas that really taught aerobic training, they taught that at the RAC at the seminary Johnny attended in Ft. Worth.

Anything that speeds up your respiration and heart rate counts as aerobic exercise. Walking, jogging, biking, swimming, and playing tennis are a few examples.

Ideally, you want to train for thirty to sixty minutes five days a week. You also want your pulse to 70 to 85 percent of maximum heart rate. Calculate this by subtracting your age from 220, multiply that amount by .70 to .85 percent, and that gives you target heart rate to use each time your exercise. Reaching it will help with maximum health benefits and dramatically increase our ability to lose weight.

If you haven’t been exercising, start slowly, build up over time. If you have been sedentary, start with no more than ten minutes of low impact aerobic conditioning daily. The next week increase it to 15, then to 20 minutes the following week. Continue until you are at the optimum daily level.

Interval Training

Interval Training is a way to burn more calories after you exercise, during rest or sleep, and get more benefits from your exercise. It is short bursts of high intensity exercise followed by longer periods of lighter exercise- sort of like the wind sprints we did in high school.

Way It’s Done:


  1. Warm up 5 minutes of walking
  2. Speed up and walk fast for 60 seconds
  3. slow down and stroll for 75 seconds
  4. repeat steps 2 and 3 five more times
  5. finish with 5 minutes of walking at a comfortable pace to cool down.

With interval training you can make your cells smarter, improve the efficiency of your mitochondria and even create a few more. You also need to do something to stop the loss of muscle so you need to add strength training to help increase muscle size and strength, increase the number of mitchondria in our body, and boost our metabolic rate so we can burn more calories at rest or sleeping. Ideally you want to build up to two sets of eight to ten repetitions of a weight that leads to muscle fatigue for each major muscle group. A twenty minute routing two to three times a week can cover all the bases.

Dr. Hyman says when people use all the things in this book they sometimes get stuck and can’t seem to lose that last 10 to 15 pds. Aerobic training, including intervals and strength training, can take people all the way. It also reduces your appetite, sets in motion all the hormones in the brain, and immune balancing chemicals that promote a healthy weight and metabolism. Exercise is one of the most potent anti-inflammatories and antioxidants known. It also helps control hunger signals, improves insulin sensitivity, burns off stress chemicals, boosts thyroid function and helps your liver detoxify.

  1. Eat Foods that Turn Up Your Metabolism, and Avoid Foods that Turn It Down-

    Whole, unprocessed, organic, non GMO, grass fed, free range, etc.

Antioxidants 2

  1. Use Supplements That Give You a Metabolic Tune Up
  • NAC- Helps restore glutathione in the cells, the most powerful antioxidant in the body
  • Acetyl L Carnitine; Transports fat into the mitochondria
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid-universal antioxidant-helps protect mitochondria from oxidation
  • Coenzyme Q10: Helps increase energy production
  • NADH: Helps increase energy production
  • Creatine powder: Helps provide energy for the muscle cells and metabolism
  • Amino acids (arginine and aspartic acid): raw materials use in cellular metabolism needed for the mitochondria
  • d-ribose: the raw material for energy production and the creation of ATP in the cells
  1. Test Your Mitchondria

Dr. Hyman uses a cardiometabolic stress test and the urinary organic acid profile. Dr. Katherine Henry used the organic acid profile on me and it does indeed tell a wealth of information of where deficiencies are and how to correct them.

  • Cardiometabolic stress test measure the rate at which you consume and burn oxygen
  • Organic acids test is a urine test that measures the by products of metabolism, nutritional deficiencies and more. The cardimetabolic test looks indirectly at the number and power of the mitochondria, the organic acids look at their biochemical efficiency. Metametrix, www.metametrix.com is one of the labs who do this, and they have a list of practitioners in your area who are available to do this test for you.

Closing example was a lady in her late sixties, was a widow, estranged from her family, had a few close friends. She had been a diabetic for years, had rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, hypothyroidism, reflux, and angina. She was always tired and depressed. She weighed more than 250 pds, was five four and had gained and lost weight many times.

He tested “Diane” and found she had many problems processing fats and carbs through her mitochondria. By addressing the damaged mitochondria through reducing the sugars in her diet, exercising moderately, and taking some special supplements, including lipoic acid, CoQ 10 and carnitine, she was able to get her mitochondria burning all that fat and able to stop taking a number of medications.

A year later she had lost 45 pds, her inflammation was gone, her liver was no longer fatty, her blood sugar and triglycerides were normal, and she no longer had diabetes. She had her life back, with energy and joy back in her step. When we tested her fat, carbohydrate, and energy metabolism, it was all back to normal.


  • mitochondria are the parts of our cell that convert calories and oxygen into energy. The more you have and the more efficient they are, the more calories you can burn both when exercising and at rest
  • One of the reasons you you dieting doesn’t work is because you lose muscle and replace it with fat. When this happens you cut your metabolic power in half.

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