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What Is Mitophagy and How Does It Impact Aging?

Mitophagy, an essential component of staying healthy and aging well, can be induced through lifestyle choices and supplements. Here's how.

As we age, we experience a decline in autophagy efficiency, which is a cellular process that plays a crucial role in maintaining cellular homeostasis by recycling damaged or dysfunctional components and clearing out harmful substances. It is essentially a self-cleaning mechanism that helps the cell remove debris and maintain its proper function. Despite this function declining with age, we can help support it through our behaviors and by taking certain supplements, like Urolithin A. 

As our cells age and become more vulnerable to harm, they accumulate harmful substances referred to as free radicals. Autophagy steps in as our body’s mechanism to break down and recycle these aging cells, effectively reducing oxidative stress and the likelihood of age-related diseases. According to a study published in Nature, “compromised autophagy is a hallmark of aging.” Needless to say, autophagy is an essential component of staying healthy and aging well. 

What is mitophagy?

Mitophagy, a specific type of autophagy, is a process that specifically targets our cellular powerhouses, known as mitochondria. This quality control mechanism plays a crucial role in maintaining the health and optimal functioning of our mitochondria. Unfortunately, as we age, both autophagy and mitophagy rates begin to decrease, resulting in an accumulation of damaged cells and sub-optimal mitochondria.

There are several methods, such as lifestyle changes and supplements like Urolithin A, to trigger mitophagy and maximize the associated health benefits, such as reducing oxidative stress, improving hormone balance, and removing damaged cells.

Mitophagy Supplements

To further support cellular renewal and healthy aging, one can consider using supplements that naturally stimulate mitophagy. Urolithin A (UA) is a unique compound produced by the gut microbiome as a byproduct of polyphenols found in certain foods like pomegranates. Clinically, Urolithin A has been proven to induce the process of mitochondrial recycling, resulting in improved cellular energy, strength, and endurance.

Because many people are not able to produce adequate amounts of Urolithin A from their foods, we supplement with Timeline Nutrition’s Mitopure product. You can take it in capsule form, as a tasty berry or ginger powder in water, or as a protein powder. Whatever way you take it, you can know that you are helping your body in the cellular renewal process. 


According to research, frequent physical activity improves the functioning of mitochondria by facilitating beneficial changes in their structure. A developing theory proposes that, apart from constructive processes like the creation of new mitochondria (mitochondria biogenesis), the targeted removal of impaired mitochondria (referred to as mitophagy) also plays a crucial role in the exercise-induced adjustments within skeletal muscle. These combined effects ultimately contribute to enhanced mitochondrial performance. Timeline Nutrition shows that taking Mitopure is scientifically proven to improve “cellular energy, muscle strength and endurance.” In fact, a 16 week study involving 90 subjects aged 40-65 demonstrated muscle strength increased by 12%.


According to the Cleveland Clinic, “Fasting means that you stop eating for a certain amount of time. Fasting deprives your body of nutrients, forcing it to repurpose cell components to function.” While the exact fasting schedule required to stimulate mitophagy is not yet definitively established, most research indicates that a minimum of 24 hours of fasting is needed to observe an effect.

300 Studies About Urolithin A

Timeline Nutrition backs up the efficacy of their product with over 15 years of research in healthy aging and longevity. Mitopure is the first and only clinically tested Urolithin A supplement and is shown to trigger mitophagy. 

Timeline is offering AGEIST readers 10% off their first purchase with code ‘AGEIST’ at checkout.

See medical disclaimer below. ↓


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The ideas expressed here are solely the opinions of the author and are not researched or verified by AGEIST LLC, or anyone associated with AGEIST LLC. This material should not be construed as medical advice or recommendation, it is for informational use only. We encourage all readers to discuss with your qualified practitioners the relevance of the application of any of these ideas to your life. The recommendations contained herein are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always consult your physician or other qualified health provider before starting any new treatment or stopping any treatment that has been prescribed for you by your physician or other qualified health provider. Please call your doctor or 911 immediately if you think you may have a medical or psychiatric emergency.

Taylor Marks
Taylor Marks is a certified holistic health coach and professionally trained chef from The Institute of Culinary Education. Her passions include the latest research in health science, culinary arts, holistic wellness, and guiding others towards feeling their best.

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