Benefits of CoQ10

The vitamin-like coenzyme Q10 is an important nutrient that plays a pivotal role in the body's energy cycle. CoQ10, as it's often shortened to, has a few key health benefits. It processes energy, can be used to treat certain diseases, is an antioxidant, and may be in short supply in a certain segment of the population. In this article we'll look at the benefits of CoQ10 and its role in nutrition, and get a general overview of how it works.

Coenzyme Q10, known as CoQ10 or sometimes ubiquinone, is used by the body to process energy. Up to 95% of body energy may be involved with this nutrient, and the more energetic an organ is, the more CoQ10 it uses and contains within its cells. For instance, the heart requires continuous beating and thus contains a large amount of it, and in fact some of the key health benefits are directly related to heart ailments. Other illnesses may also be treated with it.

For instance, there is a class of diseases called "mitochondrial diseases" that can be treated with CoQ10. A few examples of mitochondrial diseases are diabetes mellitus with deafness (DAD) and Leigh's disease. Cancer may also be staved off with this nutrient due to CoQ10's antioxidant properties. In fact, a deficiency may lead to cancers and even heart disease, and there are certain high risk groups for CoQ10 deficiencies.

Elderly people tend to produce less of it than the young, and may be a part of the reason people tend to develop cancer and heart disease later in life. Compounding this problem is the well known effect cholesterol-reducing drugs has on the body: these drugs, called statins, actually block production of CoQ10.

Because of its antioxidant properties, damaging oxygen molecules called free radicals may build up in the body during its absence, which can lead to oxidation damage to the cells. And this ultimately can lead to...

You guessed it. Cancer and heart disease.

While the body requires this vitamin for proper functioning, too little of it can create a dangerous situation for the body's major organs, as it's these organs that require it the most. Elderly people and those taking cholesterol-lowering drugs such as Lipitor may be seriously deficient in CoQ10, and some recommend taking a supplement to make up for it. While we always recommend asking your doctor first, please consider adding this supplement to your daily intake if you are in one of these two groups.