This interview is the first in a new series on Intelligent Aging, where we will share information on how we age and how to improve the quality of our lives.

While the debate is still out on whether or not we can extend our lives, we can improve the quality of our lives through techniques like LED light therapy. Wesley Burwell, an international leader in the field of light, discusses the benefits of light for mitochondrial health in a recent interview with Jennifer Waters, L.Ac., Dipl.Ac.

Light Therapy and ATP Production

In this interview, Burwell explains the relationship between light therapy and mitochondrial health. “When you’re 21, you have about 2,500 mitochondria, which produce energy inside cells,” Burwell says. “With age, they slowly start to diminish due to lifestyle, environmental exposures, heavy metals, and different toxicities.”

Age also limits the body’s ability to produce certain enzymes. At around age 40, nitric oxide production levels fall by 50%. Nitric oxide inhibits mitochondria production to prevent overproduction. This is where light therapy comes in. When you put lights on the tissue, it stimulates the mitochondrial membranes and expels nitric oxide. This boosts mitochondrial membrane potential, activating the nutrients needed to produce ATP and enzymes. “Studies have shown light therapy increases ATP production by up to 150 to 200%,” Burwell states.

Nutrition can help keep the reactive oxygen species and antioxidants in effect. However, those with digestive system concerns cannot break down macronutrients into micronutrients as easily for use on a cellular level. Light therapy directly impacts cells, enabling them to bring nutrients into the cells and activate them.

What Happens during LED Light Therapy?

You may wonder what goes on with light therapy. Burwell explains that when light is shined on the skin, it passes through the blood. As blood travels through the bloodstream, light activates hemoglobin and myoglobin. This puts cells in an ionic state for local ATP production, which interacts directly with the mitochondria. 

The cells push out nitric oxide to produce more ATP, opening the circulatory path. This permits the system to cycle and backed-up production to commence. The liver and kidneys get a boost, and fresh blood flows to the ovaries and thyroid, ultimately helping you achieve your best genetic potential.

Light Therapy for Fertility

Light therapy also has significant implications for fertility. Science has revealed more mitochondria are present in egg cells, meaning light therapy may be more indicated for egg retrieval or optimizing egg quality.  “Healthy egg cells are denser with mitochondria,” Burwell explains. “They’re more accessibility with light therapy to activate and produce.” 

Burwell has found a direct relationship between the thyroid and ovaries. If the thyroid is over-functioning, the ovaries are under-functioning, which decreases production. Exposing light to both glands can promote balance. Even if only the ovaries receive LED light therapy, it can positively affect the thyroid. To gain more insights, watch the full interview with Burwell on Light Therapy & Mitochondrial Health. You can also contact Jennifer Waters, L.Ac., Dipl.Ac. for more on LED light therapy for intelligent aging, as well as our services.