Join Dr. Van Dyken as she discussed the microbiome-produced chemical Urolithin A and. how it pertains to overall human health.
00:16 What is Urolithin A and how is it made?
03:13 Reviewing the health benefits of Urolithin A
04:48 Urolithin A and the muscles
05:00 Urolithin A and the heart, blood vessels and endothelial health
05:47 Urolithin A and the brain
07:36 Urolithin A and the bones
07:48 Urolithin A and the GI tract
08:31 Urolithin A and the kidney
08:57 Urolithin A and metabolic diseases like obesity and diabetes
09:42 Human Studies
Video on Akkermansia mucinophila: https://youtu.be/9vqWr2JH8Yw
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Urolithin A is a natural gut microbiome–derived food metabolite. It all starts when we eat a food that is high in Ellagitannins. These ellagitannins get converted to Ellagic acid in the small intestine. Ellagitannins and Ellagic acid are polyphenols that are present in highest concentrations in walnuts, pomegranates and berries. Microbes in our gut “digest” the ellagic acid and excrete the Urolithin A. Not just any microbe can metabolize Ellagic acid though, there are only a certain specialized few that can get the job done. Some of these microbes are Gordonibacter urolithinfaciens, Gordonibacter pamelaeae, Ellagibacter isourolithinifaciens, Bifidobacterium pseudocatenulatum, and one of my favorite microbes – Akkermansia mucinophila. There are some factors that seem to decrease our ability to produce Urothilin A from Ellagic acid: aging, body weight and overall health status.
Let’s review the benefits of urolithin A. The most consistent effect of Urolithin A is the improvement of mitochondrial health. It does this by recycling and clearing out dysfunctional mitochondria – this process is called mitophagy. The old, damaged mitochondria get recycled, and this leads to the generation of new mitochondria and improved cellular quality. As we get older, our ability to clear out the dysfunctional mitochondria is impaired, so being able to restore this process is a very promising strategy to counteract age related decline due to mitochondrial aging.
Another important benefit of Urolithin A is its anti-inflammatory properties.