CoQ10: Energy, Heart Health, and So Much More 

By, Chelsea Albrecht

 

Coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10, is naturally made by our bodies and found within every cell of the human body. It is a substance similar to that of a vitamin and our cells use it to produce the energy needed for cell maintenance and production. As it functions as an antioxidant, CoQ10 can protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules.  Additionally, CoQ10 can boost energy and speed up the recovery time from intense endurance efforts. Just as within our bodies, small amounts of CoQ10 are naturally present in many foods, but can be found at much higher levels in foods like peanuts, soy oils, mackerel, sardines, and “organ meats” like hearts, liver, or kidneys. 

As we grow older, our bodies’ natural ability to produce CoQ10 diminishes, meaning the level of CoQ10 present within our cells decreases with increased age.  Additionally levels of CoQ10 are notably lower in patients with a wide range of diseases, genetic disorders, and those taking certain medications.  A person with heart failure will already have low levels of CoQ10 due to their health issues, but the statins used to treat heart failure also block the bodies’ ability to produce CoQ10.  Therefore, it is common for patients placed on a statin to also be encouraged to take CoQ10 as a supplement.   CoQ10 levels within white blood cells, plasma, and platelets have been demonstrated to increase with supplementary oral administration of the substance, and these increased levels have demonstrated a positive effect on heart performance in ischemic heart disease, and congestive heart failure, as well as lowering blood pressure. 

CoQ10, a naturally occurring enzyme found within your body’s cells, is used by our cells to produce the energy that is needed for cell regrowth.  CoQ10 is more and more frequently being used a nutritional supplement, much like a daily vitamin, due to its’ inherent antioxidant properties and promising benefits in treating diseases in humans.  Studies show, that when taken orally on a daily basis, CoQ10 can help to slow, improve, or even reverse the symptoms of various cardiovascular diseases.  Less research has been done on diseases outside of heart health, but current studies show patients with illnesses ranging from Alzheimer’s and Cancer to Diabetes and Parkinson’s may benefit from a daily dose of CoQ10. 


 

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