What is CoQ10 good for?

I had a friend ask this question a while back, so here a recent research just out showing the benefits of CoQ10 or Coenzyme Q10 supplementation lowering interleukin-6 and providing antioxidant benefits in coronary artery disease patients.

Inflammation plays a role in the development of heart disease, the leading cause of death in the Western world. While coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) supplementation can benefit the heart, few studies have investigated its role in protecting against inflammation in heart disease patients.

In a trial described in an article published on February 16, 2012 in the journal Nutrition, researchers at Chung Shan Medical University in Taiwan compared the effects of twelve weeks of supplementation with 60 or 150 milligrams per day of CoQ10, or a placebo in 40 men and women with coronary artery disease. Plasma CoQ10 levels, markers of inflammation including high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), interleukin-6 and homocysteine; malondialdehyde (a marker of lipid peroxidation) and levels of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD) were measured before and after the treatment period.

At the beginning of the study, having a higher CoQ10 level was associated with a lower level of interleukin-6 and C-reactive protein. By the end of the treatment period, plasma coenzyme Q10 levels increased in both groups that received the supplement. Among those who received the higher dose, interleukin-6 levels decreased by 14 percent and malondialdehyde levels were significantly lower by the end of the trial compared to baseline levels. Both groups that received CoQ10 experienced greater SOD activity. A non-significant reduction in hs-CRP values was observed in association with CoQ10 supplementation.

“Cell culture experiments have demonstrated that coenzyme Q10 can moderate the anti-inflammatory effects of antioxidant activities and by nuclear factor-kappa beta1–dependent gene expression,” they write. “In the present study, coenzyme Q10 supplements at a dose of 150 milligrams showed a significant antioxidization effect in decreasing the malondialdehyde level and slightly increasing SOD activities after 12 weeks of intervention.”

“Coenzyme Q10 supplementation at a dosage of 150 milligrams appears to decrease the inflammatory marker interleukin-6 in patients with coronary artery disease,” the authors conclude. “Long-term studies are needed to establish the beneficial effects of higher-dosage coenzyme Q10 supplementation on inflammation in patients with coronary artery disease.”
(Above from LEF.org)

CoQ10 is especially if you’ve been prescribed statins to lower cholesterol. Statin drugs lower cholesterol by poisoning the metabolic pathway which produces cholesterol and in the process the bodies normal production of CoQ10 along with sex hormones are also poisoned. You’ll hear the warnings that if you take statins to watch out for muscle pain, this is because with lowered levels of CoQ10 you’re muscles can’t produced the energy they should. More dangerous than aching legs is what the reduced levels of CoQ10 do to your most powerful muscle, your heart. when the heart can’t pump enough blood due to reduced CoQ10 blood and fluids begin to back up in your lungs and the result is congestive heart failure. So if you are taking statins you must also supplement with CoQ10. Since statin drugs were introduced there has been a huge rise in deaths from congestive heart failure – but their cholesterol is lower.

Athletes will also burn up a lot of CoQ10 during strenuous workouts so they also should supplement to replace what they use up and many will also use CoQ10 to improve performance.

As usual, if you do take CoQ10 supplements make sure you use a reputable company who manufacture to certified pharmaceutical manufacturing procedures. I’ve personally visited a number of supplement manufactures as well as pharmaceutical drug manufacture and the quality control in many is woefully lacking. There are very few companies you can truly trust to consistently provide exactly what is listed on the label and nothing else.

Coenzyme Q10 levels reduced in chronic fatigue syndrome

In a recent article published in Neuroendocrinology Letters, researchers from Belgium and Poland report that plasma coenzyme Q10 levels are significantly lower in individuals with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), a chronic disease characterized by extreme fatigue and inflammatory, autonomic and neuropsychiatric symptoms.
The current study compared the plasma CoQ10 levels of 58 men and women diagnosed with ME/CFS to 22 healthy control patients. Disease symptoms and severity were evaluated through the use of the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Rating Scale (FF Scale).
A significant reduction in CoQ10 levels was observed among ME/CFS patients compared with the control group. As many as 44.8 percent of these patients had levels that were less than the lowest CoQ10 value detected in healthy patients, which was 490 micrograms per liter. Increased CoQ10 levels predicted a reduction in total FF Scale scores and individual fatigue and autonomic symptoms. Levels of CoQ10 below 390 micrograms per liter were associated with a decrease in memory and concentration ability.
In their discussion of the findings, the authors remark that reduced levels of CoQ10 may decrease antioxidative protection, resulting in damage to membrane fatty acids and proteins. Coenzyme Q10 also helps protect the mitochondria, the cells’ energy-producing plants, from damage caused by free radical generation. Additionally, CoQ10 has anti-inflammatory and other properties, and is involved in the mitochondria’s production of energy (it has been hypothesized that most individuals with ME/CFS experience low energy due to cellular energy dysfunction).
The authors also note that fatigue and neurocognitive disorders are often an effect of statin drug use, and that statins have been shown to deplete plasma CoQ10.
“This is a first study which shows that ME/CFS is accompanied by significantly reduced plasma concentrations of CoQ10 and that lowered plasma CoQ10 is related to specific symptoms of ME/CFS, such as fatigue, autonomic and neurocognitive symptoms,” the authors announce.
“Our results suggest that patients with ME/CFS would benefit from CoQ10 supplementation in order to normalize the low CoQ10 syndrome and the inflammatory and oxidative and nitrosative stress disorders,” they conclude. “The finding that lower CoQ10 is an independent predictor of chronic heart failure (CHF) and mortality due to CHF may explain previous reports that the mean age of ME/CFS patients dying from CHF is 25 years younger than the age of those dying from CHF in the general population. Since statins significantly decrease plasma CoQ10, ME/CFS should be regarded as a relative contraindication for treatment with statins without CoQ10 supplementation.”

CoQ10 Improves Aging Skin Health

Did you know that aging skin is functionally anaerobic. Skin cell energy metabolism shifts to a predominantly non-mitochondrial pathway and is therefore functionally anaerobic with advancing age. Since coenzyme Q10 positively affects cell metabolism, it is is beneficial for human skin as it rapidly improves mitochondrial function in skin in vivo. In other worlds, taking Coenzyme Q10 will help your skin keep looking younger.