CoQ10 Health Benefits Can Improve Heart Health, Boost Natural Energy, Reduces Free Radical Damage
1. Sustains Natural Energy
CoQ10 plays a role in “mitochondrial ATP synthesis,” which is the conversion of raw energy from foods (carbohydrates and fats) into the form of energy that our cells use called adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This conversion process requires the presence of coenzyme Q in the inner mitochondrial membrane. One of its roles is to accept electrons during fatty acid and glucose metabolism and then transfer them to electron acceptors.
The process of making ATP is crucial to every cell in the human body and also allows messages to be sent between cells. To maintain energy (down to the cellular level), ATP synthesis is vital, and it needs CoQ10 to do its job. CoQ10 Health Benefits
CoQ10 may even improve specific fatigue related to exercise. Three separate double-blind, placebo-controlled studies in humans have shown improvements in exercise-related fatigue when supplemented with CoQ10 (at dosages between 100–300 milligrams per day). CoQ10 Health Benefits
2. Reduces Free Radical Damage
Oxidative damage (or free radical damage) of cell structures plays an important role in the functional declines that accompany aging and cause disease. As both a water- and fat-soluble antioxidant, CoQ10 has been found to inhibit lipid peroxidation, which occurs when cell membranes and low-density lipoproteins are exposed to oxidizing conditions that enter from outside the body.
In fact, when LDL is oxidized, CoQ10 is one of the first antioxidants used to help offset the effects. Within mitochondria, coenzyme Q10 has been found to protect membrane proteins and DNA from the oxidative damage that accompanies lipid peroxidation and neutralize free radicals directly that contribute to nearly all age-related diseases (heart disease, cancer, diabetes, neurological disease, etc.).
One way this might be especially effective is found in a research study that discovered CoQ10 may help protect from some oxidative stress caused by insulin resistance and related to diabetes. Results on mixed on its effects on blood sugar, however.
3. Can Improve Heart Health and Offset Effects of Statin Drugs
Although experts feel that additional well-controlled clinical trials are still needed to prove its effects, CoQ10 has strong potential for prevention and treatment of heart ailments by improving cellular bioenergetics, acting as an antioxidant and boosting free radical-scavenging abilities. CoQ10 Health Benefits
What we do know is that CoQ10 supplementation may be useful for those taking statins, since it can lower side effects that they often cause. Statins are used to reduce an enzyme in the liver that not only decreases the production of cholesterol, but also further lowers the natural production of CoQ10.
It’s possible that CoQ10 can interact with lipid lowering medications that inhibit the activity of HMG-CoA reductase, a critical enzyme in both cholesterol and coenzyme Q10 biosynthesis. A supplement of CoQ10 is often recommended to restore natural levels to their optimum and counter the effects of statin drugs, including muscle pain.
However, some evidence conflicts — a 2007 review found that evidence was lacking to officially recommend CoQ10 supplementation for patients with statins, although it did recognize that there aren’t any “known risks.” Ultimately, this review recognized the need for better-designed trials and did not actually contradict the possible benefit of CoQ10 to offset statin side effects.
This isn’t the only way CoQ10 can support the heart and circulatory system, though. Does CoQ10 improve circulation? Yes — and it may be able to increase blood flow and improve exercise performance and capacity for people who have suffered heart failure.
Does CoQ10 lower blood pressure? Study results have been mixed overall when it comes to its effects on hypertension. According to the National Institutes of Health, “The small amount of evidence currently available suggests that CoQ10 probably doesn’t have a meaningful effect on blood pressure.” However, a 2002 review published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing states: CoQ10 Health Benefits
[CoQ10] has potential for use in prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease, particularly hypertension (high blood pressure), hyperlipidemia, coronary artery disease, and heart failure… Further clinical trials are warranted, but because of its low toxicity it may be appropriate to recommend coenzyme Q10 to select patients as an adjunct to conventional treatment.
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