Coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10 is a naturally occurring substance in the body that helps convert food into energy. It’s found in almost every cell and is a powerful antioxidant. 4
CoQ10 is found in many foods and available as a supplement. It comes in two forms: ubiquinol, which is the active antioxidant form, and ubiquinone which is the oxidized form. The body partially converts ubiquinone into ubiquinol. Many supplements contain both forms. 1,2
In general, coenzymes support enzymes in various biochemical functions. CoQ10 is a vital participant in the chain of metabolic chemical reactions that generate energy in cells. It’s present in higher concentrations in organs that require higher energy consumption such as the heart, liver and kidneys. 1,3
Coenzyme Q10 Health Uses and Health Benefits
Coenzyme CoQ10 has been the subject of thousands of research studies and is proven to protect the body from free radical damage. Free radicals are oxygen atoms deficient in electrons that become highly reactive. This causes damage to tissues and DNA. The antioxidant properties of CoQ10 provide excellent protection from free radicals. 2,3
The primary health benefits of CoQ10 are boosting cell energy production which is important to the heart, brain, nervous system as well as building the body’s immune system. Taking CoQ10 supplements are effective for treating these diseases and disorders:
- Congestive Heart Failure - CHF is a condition where the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. It’s a common result of coronary artery disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. Coenzyme CoQ10 significantly helps to build heart muscle and improve circulation.
- Heart Disease - Heart disease is a general term for heart problems like coronary artery disease, heart arrhythmia, heart valve problems and congestive heart failure. The energy-building cellular effects of CoQ10 greatly improve heart health.
- Migraine - Migraines are reoccurring headaches of moderate to severe pain. Their exact cause is unknown however, are three times more frequent in women than in men. It’s suspected a deficiency in CoQ10 may be a contributor to migraine pain.
- Parkinson’s Disease - Parkinson’s is a neurological degenerative disease where the nerve cells lack in dopamine. It affects the muscular movement of the body. Although there is no cure for Parkinson’s disease, studies have shown that high doses of CoQ10 supplements are effective at controlling this debilitating disease.
- AIDS (HIV) - HIV is the human immunodeficiency virus that is responsible for developing AIDS, an acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. The HIV virus destroys T-helper cells and makes copies of itself instead. Research indicates that CoQ10 may be beneficial in controlling HIV/AIDS and there is promising evidence to support this.
- Angina - Angina is the chest pain and discomfort associated with various pre-existing heart diseases. The heart-strengthening properties of CoQ10 effectively reduce pain from angina.
Coenzyme Q10 Side Effects and Precautions
There is limited research on the toxicity of CoQ10. Doses up to 1,200 mg per day are proven beneficial for certain health conditions, especially Parkinson’s disease with no known side effects. Some studies indicate that high daily doses up to 3,600 mg are safe although some gastrointestinal discomfort were reported with these high doses. 1