CoQ10 is a popular supplement used to boost energy levels, protect the heart, and reduce the side effects of statins. It is important for proper mitochondrial function, heart health, muscle function, and more. Read on to learn the supplementation benefits, dosage, and side effects. What is Coenzyme Q10?
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an important compound found in every cell in the body . It is a type of coenzyme, which means that it helps enzymes work more effectively. CoQ10 is mainly located in the membrane of mitochondria , where it is used to make energy [ 1 ].
For more about CoQ10’s function, check out this post . Snapshot
Increases energy levels
Boosts mitochondrial function
Protects against free radicals and inflammation
Improves heart health
Reduces blood sugar levels and blood pressure
Helps with migraines
Reduces the side effects of statins and chemo
Possible interactions with blood thinners
Most benefits lack stronger clinical evidence
May not help with Alzheimer’s disease
Doesn’t improve exercise performance
Coenzyme Q10 Health Benefits
The following benefits are based on studies that involved supplementation with ubiquinone (the oxidized form of CoQ10). You can learn more about ubiquinol, including its health benefits and dosage, here . Likely Effective:
1) Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency
In rare cases, coenzyme Q10 deficiency can cause weakness, fatigue, and seizures.
Oral coenzyme Q10 (800 mg daily) seems to improve the symptoms of deficiency in adults. The recommended dosage in children is 30 mg/kg daily in three divided doses [ 2 , 3 , 4 ]. 2) Mitochondrial Diseases
Mitochondrial diseases are a group of disorders caused by mitochondria that don’t function correctly. CoQ10 improves symptoms of mitochondrial disorders including poor nerve function, muscular weakness, tremor, inability to exercise, cramps, and muscle stiffness [ 5 , 6 , 7 , 8 , 9 ].
Doctors may recommend supplementing with CoQ10 if a patient is deficient or if they determine that the patient may have a mitochondrial disease. Possibly Effective:
3) Heart Disease Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a type of heart disease in which the walls of the heart become abnormally thick, causing an irregular heartbeat and making it harder for the heart to pump blood.Taking 200 mg/day CoQ10 for improved heart function, irregular heartbeat, and quality of life and reduced the heart wall thickness in 87 people with HCM. In another study of 7 HCM patients, 200 mg/day CoQ10 was able to reduce heart wall thickness by 26% [ 10 , 11 ].In a 2-year study of 420 people with heart failure, taking 300 mg/day CoQ10 reduced mortality by 43%. A 1-year study found that CoQ10 reduced the number of people who required hospitalization for worsening heart failure. Supplementation also reduced the incidence of fluid buildup in the lungs and asthma [ 12 , 13 ].CoQ10 (100 – 320 mg/day) improved exercise capacity in heart failure patients by increasing the ability of the lungs and heart to deliver oxygen to muscles [ 14 , 15 ].A review of 14 studies and 2.1K heart failure patients found that CoQ10 reduced mortality by 31% but did not improve heart function or symptoms of heart failure [ 16 ].CoQ10 given within 3 days of a heart attack reduced heart pain , irregular heartbeat, and improved heart function in 144 people. The number of new heart attacks as well as deaths was also reduced in the group taking CoQ10 [ 17 ].CoQ10 improves heart health and may prevent thickening of the heart and heart failure. It also benefits people who have experienced heart attacks and it particularly protective if given within days of experiencing one. Heart Surgery Outcomes A review of 8 studies found that CoQ10 taken before heart surgery reduced the need for drugs after surgery and the development of irregular heartbeat [ 18 ].One study found that taking CoQ10 for 14 days before heart surgery helped maintain heart CoQ10 levels, improved heart function, and reduced recovery time [ 19 ]. Blood Vessel Health and Circulation Nitric oxide (NO) is a molecule that helps improve circulation by causing blood vessels to dilate. Healthy blood vessels produce NO to allow proper blood flow and prevent narrowing of the arteries. Free radicals such as superoxide inactivate NO, which prevents blood vessels from dilating and decreases circulation. CoQ10 neutralizes superoxide and increases nitric oxide levels [ 20 , 21 , 22 , 23 ].In multiple studies of over 135 people, CoQ10 (100 – 300 mg/day) improved blood vessel health and increased circulation. CoQ10 supplementation increased levels of superoxide dismutase , an enzyme that neutralizes superoxide [ 24 , 25 , 23 , 14 ]. Blood Clotting Supplementing with 100 mg CoQ10 daily for 20 days reduced the size of platelets and helped prevent them from sticking together [ 26 ]. 4) Blood Pressure Multiple studies of over 280 total people with high blood pressure have found that supplementing with CoQ10 (100 – 225 mg/day) reduces blood pressure. Reductions in systolic pressure ranged from 8% to 11% and diastolic pressure ranged from 9% to 12% [ 27 , 28 , 29 , 30 ].In people with slightly high blood pressure, studies have found that CoQ10 reduces systolic pressure 3 – 4% and diastolic 0.4 – 2% [ 31 , 32 +].However, two 12-week studies (40 people with slightly high blood pressure and 30 people with high blood pressure) found no effect from supplementation with 200 mg/day. Another study of 55 people with slightly high blood pressure found no change after 4 months of taking either 600 mg or 1,200 mg daily [ 25 +, 33 , 34 ].There is good research to suggest CoQ10 reduces blood pressure in people with high blood pressure. People with normal or slightly high levels may see little or no effect. Pregnancy Preeclampsia is high blood pressure during pregnancy, with swelling in the hands and feet. Women who took 200 mg/day CoQ10 20 weeks before delivery had a 20% […]