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.