What is ATP?

According to biologists ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) is the energy currency of life. It is that high energy molecule that stores the energy required by us for everything we need to do.


Where is ATP located inside our body?

Inside our body it is present in the cytoplasm and nucleoplasm of every cell, therefore all the energy required by the physiological mechanisms can directly be obtained from the stored ATP. This energy-bearing molecule is found in all living cells. ATP molecule gets energy from the breakdown of foods. Carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, and phosphorus atoms all together make an ATP molecule.

Main functions of ATP
Every single living thing needs energy for all mechanisms to work, and in human beings the main power comes from the mitochondrion. In every cell of the body mitochondrion exists. It is just like a power plant which supplies energy to cells. ATP is produced by this mitochondrion.

The main purpose of ATP is to transport chemical energy for metabolism within cells. And don’t forget that Metabolism is the combination of the chemical and physical changes that take place inside living beings. In simple words it gives energy to our cells by converting the energy of foods we eat.


The role of ATP in muscle building

ATP is actually the “storage molecule” that doesn’t convert sugar into energy; it’s a storage molecule for energy inside the body. When the body breaks down glucose or other sugars it makes ATP to store the energy released, then ATP is used to give energy to the actin protein to make it move.

We all know that actin and myosin are the two proteins in muscles. These proteins make the muscles move. This process happens to make the muscle contract.

It is a bit difficult to understand the whole process by text only, but in simple words ATP is responsible to give energy to these proteins, or in short, ATP is also the source of energy for muscle strength. It is also used to:

  • Build molecules
  • Electrical impulse generation in the nerves
  • Muscle contraction

Only about 3 ounces of ATP is stored in the muscle cells at one time. During intense activity this is enough energy to support a few seconds of muscle contraction.

It also gives energy to the heart muscle. ATP carries out many important functions also in other muscles for movement. ATP is a vital thing that keeps the whole world operating. Experiments and evidence suggest that it provides almost 95% of all cellular energy.


Other important functions of ATP (Adenosine triphosphate)

1- Transportation of sodium, calcium, and potassium from the cell membrane.

2- Synthesizing of cholesterol and protein.


Exercise and ATP (Adenosine triphosphate)

The full process of turning ATP into energy is very complicated. ATP is called an adenine nucleotide bound to three phosphates. Between the second and third phosphate groups there is a lot of energy stored in the bond that is used to fuel chemical reactions. Whenever your cell needs energy, ATP breaks this bond to form ADP and also a free phosphate molecule. The second phosphate group can also be broken to form AMP in particular instances. The cell stores excess energy by forming ATP from ADP and phosphate.

As we have discussed earlier, ATP is needed for all the biochemical reactions that are responsible for any muscle contraction. More and more ATP consumption takes place with the increase in muscle work. So there should be a continuous supply of energy in order for the muscle to keep going and moving.

The body can produce ATP from several different systems as it is an extremely important element of body. All systems work together, but in phases. The amazing thing is that different kinds of exercises use different body systems; this is why a marathon runner get ATP in a different way from a sprinter.

Below is the order from three biochemical systems in the muscle from where ATP comes from:

  • Phosphagen system
  • Lactic acid system
  • Respiration
The role of mitochondrion and ATP in brain function

As stated above, production centers for ATP are mitochondrion. Their role is very important inside the brain. The brain uses 50% of the sugars we get from our diet and 20% of the body’s oxygen. The brain itself can’t store ATP and the mitochondria from other organs are unable to give ATP from any other organ. If the brain stops making ATP, the ATP in your heart cannot help out. And without ATP production, our brain, will not function well and the same is the case with organs with high demand of ATP.


What happens to our bodies without ATP?

ATP is important to such an extent for the human body that Without it we would die because we will have no energy to do anything, as it is the only usable energy which our body can use. Some people called it the perfect energy currency for the body.


How many different kinds of work can ATP do?

It depends on the type of enzymes it binds to, in easy words ATP is just like any fuel. The function of fuel in any machine depends on the type of machine. So ATP works exactly according to the enzymes.


ATP stores energy

All living things store energy in the form of chemical bonds. The energy inside our body is constantly moving from one molecule to the other. Now the question is how this energy gets converts from food molecule to muscle molecule. The simple answer to this question is; Adenosine triphosphate. It works like a battery which can be recharged. Energy released while converting ATP to ADP which is the uncharged form. When this uncharged ADP binds to a third phosphate group it is converted back to a charged form of ATP.

Many complex chemical reactions take place while we eat lunch, but the most important thing we are doing is recharging our ATP. And this recharging helps us in doing many things like flexing our muscles, thinking, exercising, in short everything.


How can we take care of our ATP levels?

Most of the times our body has the capability to produce ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) itself, but in some cases, due to many reasons, the natural production of ATP can be disturbed. So in that case taking any high quality ATP related supplements like CoQ10 can help us greatly. Moreover normal people can also take ATP supplements to not only help control aging, but also supply the body with energy and help with CoQ10 heart health. But one needs to be consistent with increased ATP uptake to see its positive effects. It also helps our brain to function properly resulting in mood enhancements as well. There are innumerable benefits of ATP.