May 17, 2022

Approaching 30? Time To Stock Up On CoQ10 Supplements

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Avanthika Nityanand

M.Sc Human Genetics, B.Sc Plant Biology & Plant Biotechnology

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Approaching 30? Time To Stock Up On CoQ10 Supplements
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Nowadays people all over the world have a routine of popping health supplements with the hope for better health. One such supplement, coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10, has numerous health benefits. You must have even noticed this supplement from various brands in your drug store or grocery store.

In this article, let us focus on coenzyme Q10 and whether it is worth spending your money on this supplement.

Why Is CoQ10 Important?

CoQ10 is a vitamin-like substance that is found in every cell in the human body. It is made naturally by the body and is usually produced in sufficient quantities as per the body’s requirements and to prevent any deficiency. Around three-quarters of CoQ10 found in a person’s blood is produced naturally while the rest comes from dietary sources like organ meat, fish, and poultry.

CoQ10 plays an important role in making energy for the body. This energy is used for almost all the functions in the body. The human cells utilize coenzyme Q10 to convert the energy we get from carbohydrates into adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP is the energy form that cells need to carry out critical body functions. ATP is crucial for muscle and neurological functions, healthy bones, and overall good metabolism.

CoQ10 is concentrated more in the cells that require high energy like the kidney, heart, brain, liver, and lungs. It also has antioxidant properties. CoQ10 works along with selenium, vitamin C and vitamin E to protect against free radical damage to the cells.

However, our body’s stock of coenzyme Q10 decreases as we age. Research shows that several health conditions like heart issues, cancers, and genetic disorders are linked with decreasing levels of CoQ10. The deficiency of CoQ10 is also considered as one of the causes of premature aging.

CoQ10 is a fat-soluble nutrient and can also be derived from the food we eat. It is also available in supplement forms for people with very low levels. 

What Are The Types of CoQ10

There are two types of coenzyme Q10 called ubiquinone and ubiquinol. Ubiquinone is the oxidized form of CoQ10, whereas ubiquinol is the reduced or active form of CoQ10. 

By nature, coenzyme Q10 is a substance that the human body faces difficulty in absorbing. It is because the Q10 molecules tend to stick together and become large crystals that are indigestible. These clusters of crystals cannot infiltrate the intestinal wall and enter the bloodstream.

So, the human body usually converts ubiquinone that is found in the cells into ubiquinol for better absorption and functioning. Oxidation that occurs in the body converts the ubiquinol form back to its original ubiquinone form.

Studies on CoQ10 mention that ubiquinol is better absorbed by the body. So, CoQ10 that is found in the food sources in our diet and supplements are usually in the ubiquinol form, for better absorption by our bodies.

As we get older than 25 years of age, it becomes harder for the human body to convert the inactive ubiquinone to the active ubiquinol. So, the CoQ10 levels decrease as well.

Can You Take CoQ10 With Statins?

Statin medication is usually taken to lower cholesterol levels. Statins block the production of a substance called mevalonic acid, which the liver uses to produce cholesterol. However, it is the same mevalonic acid that the body uses to make CoQ10. This means that statin treatments might unintentionally be causing a decrease in CoQ10 levels.

Also, around 10% of people taking statin medications report that they face muscle pains. CoQ10 supplements are prescribed by doctors, mainly cardiologists, to treat or prevent muscle pain and to match the depreciating levels of CoQ10 that arise from the statin treatments. 

What Are The Benefits Of Taking CoQ10 Supplements

As per Mayo Clinic, there are several benefits to taking CoQ10 supplements. Some of them are listed below:

  • Helps in treating heart failure and high blood pressure (BP)
  • Helps lessen high cholesterol in the blood
  • Aids in cancer treatment and protects organs from toxic chemotherapy medication
  • Improves immune system in HIV and AIDS patients
  • Helps in the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a condition causing vision loss in old people
  • Aids people with Alzheimer’s disease
  • Treats Parkinson’s disease
  • Betters the symptoms of people with chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Helps in treating and preventing migraines
  • Assists in treatment for gum issues
  • Aids in male fertility issues by increasing sperm count and motility in men

What Type Of CoQ10 Supplement Should You Take?

Taking coenzyme Q10 supplements can benefit every cell in your body. More so in case you are on statin treatments or have health conditions. Taking CoQ10 supplements regularly can help increase the CoQ10 levels in the blood. 

Hence the question arises - which type of CoQ10 should you take? The ubiquinone form is easier to find and cheaper than the ubiquinol form. But that doesn’t mean ubiquinol form is very rare. It is just expensive and a little hard to get your hands on.

Another point to consider is that there is no proper clarity if the CoQ10 supplements that come in ubiquinone form are easily converted to ubiquinol form by the body. So, we can conclude that you get your money’s worth by buying the ubiquinol form that is properly absorbed by the human body. 

CoQ10 Supplements And Their Dosage

CoQ10 supplements come in different forms: tablets, hard shell capsules, soft gel capsules, oral sprays, etc. 

Coenzyme Q10 is usually prescribed by your medical health practitioners depending on your health conditions. The dosage differs from person to person. 

Though CoQ10 is a safe supplement, it is best to double-check with your doctors once, in case you take other medications as well because CoQ10 interacts with other medications.

CoQ10 is recommended for people with heart conditions, people taking statin medications, or in general, as an antioxidant. Doctors usually recommend a dosage of 200 mg to 400 mg of CoQ10 daily.

Conclusion

CoQ10 supplements benefit a lot of people looking for ways to boost their health. Since CoQ10 is fat-soluble, it is best absorbed by the human body when taken with a meal that also has a fat source.

To get maximum benefits, it is best to buy CoQ10 supplements that come in ubiquinol form, which is the most absorbable when compared to ubiquinone.

CoQ10 is considered a safe supplement, but before choosing or starting on the supplements, consult with your doctor to not complicate any existing health condition.

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