Coenzyme Q-10 or CoQ-10 is a fat-soluble, antioxidant compound found naturally in our body and is stored in the mitochondria of the cells. CoQ-10 helps generate energy in our cells. It acts as an antioxidant, which aids to protect the cells from oxidative damage and disease-causing bacteria or viruses, helps in neutralizing harmful particles called free radicals and plays an important role in our body’s metabolism. The highest concentrations of CoQ-10 are found in organs where the energy demands are highest, such as the heart, kidneys, lungs and liver.
There are two forms of CoQ-10 in our body: ubiquinone and ubiquinol. For our body to use this compound, it must convert ubiquinone, its inactive form into its active form, ubiquinol. Typically, 90-200 mg of CoQ-10 is the recommended limit per day, however certain conditions require higher doses of 300-600 mg per day.
CoQ-10 is found in both, foods and supplements. Certain food items consisting of this compound are:
1. Whole Grains and Legumes: Lentils, Peanuts, Soybeans
3. Vegetables: Spinach, Cauliflower, Broccoli
4. Fruits: Oranges, Strawberries
5. Nuts and Seeds: Sesame seeds, Pistachios
6. Fish: Tuna, Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines
8. Oils: Soybean oil, Canola oil
Although our body produces this chemical compound, its production tends to deplete with age. Thus, older people seem to be deficient in this compound. Certain medical conditions like cancer, consumption of statin medicines, genetic mutations and mitochondria disorders are other reasons for dropping levels of CoQ-10 in our body.
Certain Benefits of Coenzyme10 are as follows:
CoQ-10 seems to help heart failure by improving cardiovascular function, increasing the production of Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) and limiting oxidative damage. Heart failure is often a consequence of other heart conditions like high blood pressure. Heart conditions may lead to oxidative damage and inflammation of veins and arteries. Heart failures occur when such conditions affect the heart causing the heart to contract, relax or pump blood irregularly. Statin therapies further reduce the CoQ-10 levels in our bodies. It seems that treatment with CoQ10 could assist with restoring optimal levels of energy production, reduce oxidative damage and improve heart function, all of which can aid the treatment of heart failure.
The antioxidative properties of CoQ-10 could help improve sperm quality and reduce the decline in the number and quality of eggs in women. This could help with fertility.
When applied directly to the skin, CoQ-10 can reduce the damage caused by the sun and increase antioxidant protection. It may help keep our skin young and flawless. Supplementing may also help decrease the risk of skin cancer.
Supplementing with CoQ-10 seems to prevent migraines as it increases mitochondrial function and reduces inflammation. It helps reduce headaches.
CoQ-10 can help with exercise performance by lowering oxidative damage, promoting exercise capacity and decreasing fatigue. Exercise performance can be affected by oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction.
CoQ-10 could help with diabetes. It increases insulin sensibility and improves blood sugar levels.
CoQ-10 plays a critical role in cell DNA protection and cell survival, both of which are strongly linked with cancer prevention and recurrence. Thus, CoQ-10 may play a preventive role when it comes to cancer.
CoQ-10 protects brain cells from oxidative damage and reduces the action of harmful compounds that can lead to brain diseases and disorders. It is hence good for the brain health as well.
CoQ-10 reduce damage and inflammation that results in diseases of the lungs, and hence protects the lungs.
Thus, several studies and researches prove that Coenzyme Q-10 is a critical and vital compound for cardiovascular health and overall health. Whether consumed from food or supplements, CoQ-10 supports one's health in several ways. CoQ-10 is a relatively well-tolerated and safe supplement that may benefit a wide variety of people looking for a natural way to boost health. CoQ-10 supplementation may improve compliance if you’re on statin therapy and experience muscle pain and weakness. Measuring CoQ-10 in the blood is the only way to determine if you need CoQ10 supplementation.