Coezyme Q10 (or CoQ10) is a vitamin-like substance, most commonly known for its important role in energy production. However, there are many other potential benefits to coenzyme Q10 and supplementation.
What is Coenzyme Q10?
Coenzyme Q10 is found in all of our cells, particularly in our mitochondria, which is part of the energy producing structure of the cell. We do actually make Q10 ourselves, however our body’s production begins to decline from as young as our mid-twenties.
Q10 also has antioxidant properties, able to protect our cells from free radicals. Free radicals are unstable atoms which can cause continuous damage. This damage is known as oxidative stress, which is linked to the development of a range of diseases and ailments - many of which have undergone extensive research exploring links with CoQ10 deficiency.
CoQ10 can be found in certain foods, such as cold water fish like tuna and salmon, as well as vegetable oils and meats. However, it can be difficult to obtain appropriate levels from diet alone, which is why many people turn to supplementation.
CoQ10 and heart health
According to the BHF, Over 900,000 people in the UK are living with heart failure. Heart failure can be caused by a number of illnesses, such as coronary artery disease (CAD) and diabetes.
As the heart has high energy requirements, it is particularly reliant on adequate Q10 levels. Q10 can help prevent the build-up of plaque in the arteries by reducing cholesterol - which would usually contribute to heart attacks or strokes. Q10 has also shown to help regulate high blood pressure, which is another potential cause of heart failure. (1)
Statin use and cholesterol
Those suffering with high cholesterol are often prescribed statins. However, as statin medications work by interrupting the same pathway the body uses to produce Q10, they can result in Q10 depletion. (2)
There are two notably famous studies on coenzyme Q10 and heart disease; Q-Symbio and KiSel-10.
Q-Symbio was carried out on over 400 patients with chronic heart disease. When treated with CoQ10, there was a 43% reduction in mortality. Other results from the study include improvement in cardiac function and a reduction in hospital admissions compared to the placebo group. (3)
In the KiSel-10 study, participants were given a dosage of SelenoPrecise and Bio Quinone Q10 for a 5 year period. This is because selenium works synergistically with Q10 when taken together.
The treatment group showed a 54% decrease in the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease related conditions. The group also experienced less inflammation and improved cardiac function. (4)
A lot of research does seem to show that CoQ10 may help with those living with heart failure.
CoQ10 and diabetes
That’s why there’s a lot of research on diabetes and CoQ10 supplementation. Evidence in a study by the British Journal of Diabetes showed significant improvements to long-term blood sugar and blood pressure control when supplementing with ubiquinone Q10.
Other results from the study include reduction in the risk of developing diabetes-related complications, and significantly improving the blood sugar level several hours after eating. (6)
CoQ10 and fertility
Research has also shown that supplementation of coenzyme Q10 may help improve both male and female fertility.
In females, the egg development cycle requires large amounts of energy and protection from free radicals that can cause damage to the egg.
Since our levels of Q10 decline with age, our body can be less effective at protecting the eggs from oxidative damage. This is why supplementation of coenzyme Q10 may help with increasing both egg quality and quantity. (7)
Molecular biologist and chemist, Rebecca Fett, also cites a number of studies that found benefits with CoQ10 supplementation in her book, It Starts with an Egg.
Some of these benefits include; more eggs fertilised, higher percentage of good-quality embryos, fewer cancelled IVF cycles due to poor egg development and lower rate of abnormalities in embryos. (8)
CoQ10 and athletic performance
As coenzyme Q10 plays such an important role in energy production, it comes as no surprise that its relationship with exercise and athletic performance has often been explored. Oxidative stress can affect muscle functioning, which is where CoQ10’s antioxidant properties can come into play.
A study from earlier this year looked at how high coenzyme Q10 levels can improve stress recovery from muscle damage. The physical activity of a team of professional football players was analysed during varying levels of Q10 in the body.
Results showed that high levels of plasma CoQ10 can prevent muscle damage, improve kidney function and are associated with higher performance in professional football players during competition. (10)
CoQ10 and bleeding gums
Bleeding and receding gums are early signs of gum disease - something that affects many adults in the UK. Gum disease is caused by a build-up of plaque on the teeth that contains bacteria.
Coenzyme Q10 may help with gum disease due to its properties in controlling inflammation. A study in India determined that an increased concentration of CoQ10 in diseased gum tissue can help suppress inflammation (11).
CoQ10 and migraines
Many people suffer from migraines, with triggers including stress, diet and tiredness. How to best prevent migraines will depend on the cause, however studies have provided evidence that coenzyme Q10 may help prevent migraines.
One study reported at least a 50% reduction in the number of days they had migraine attacks when taking CoQ10 supplements for three months (13). Another reported that supplementation was three times more likely than placebo to reduce the number of migraine attacks. (14)
Since CoQ10 is found mainly in the mitochondria, it has been shown to improve mitochondrial function and help decrease the inflammation that may occur during migraines. (15)
To summarise, due to coenzyme Q10’s participation in energy production and as an antioxidant, it may play a very important role in the prevention and treatment of a number of diseases.
Since Q10 offers such a variety of potential benefits and it can be difficult to obtain from food, it’s easy to see why so many people choose to supplement.
Why Pharma Nord Q10?
With all supplements and especially coenzyme Q10 - absorption is crucial for performance and efficacy. Pharma Nord’s Medical Advisor, David Mantle, recently explored just how important the initial formulation is for CoQ10 to ensure optimum bioavailability.
Pharma Nord coenzyme Q10 supplements, Bio-Quinone Active Q10 are 100% identical to the coenzyme Q10 produced by the body. They have been manufactured for maximum absorption, to produce a market leading Q10 product.