Diet and Nutrition

Do I Need a Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) Supplement?

Do I Need a Coenzyme Q10 Supplement?

Coenzyme Q10 or Co Q10 is a nutrient that is present in many foods and also occurs naturally in the body. This nutrient has antioxidant properties and plays an important role in protecting the cells from oxidative damage. Most people have adequate amounts of this nutrient in the body. But the levels may come down with age and in certain medical conditions. Some of the studies show that taking some additional amounts of this coenzyme may be beneficial. There is no evidence that shows that coenzyme Q supplementation will help older people or people with specific conditions.

Studies report that Co Q10 helps in reducing blood pressure, and may be used in treating heart failure and other heart conditions. When used along with other regular medications, it may be helpful in reducing the risk of cardiac diseases. There is some evidence that show that CoQ10 may be helpful in reducing the side effects of statins, like muscle pain and liver problems. It is also being studied in the prevention of many conditions, like Parkinson’s disease, muscular dystrophy, migraine headaches, and gum diseases. There are some studies that reported that CoQ 10 supplements help in slowing down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.

The ideal dose of Co Q10 is not yet established. It is better to follow the recommendations of the dietician or doctor, if you are planning to take the supplements. It is also sold as energy supplements but studies are yet to prove that it will help in boosting the energy of a person. It is always better to get nutrients from food sources, like vegetable oils, meat, and fish including, salmon, mackerel, and sardines. Co Q10 supplementation may have few side effects as well. These side effects are generally very mild like diarrhea, nausea, and heartburn.

People with chronic conditions like heart failure, kidney diseases, liver problems and diabetes should use this supplement carefully and only with recommendation from the doctor. This is important as more than 300 mg of Co Q10 may affect the levels of enzymes in the liver. It may also lower the levels of blood sugar and pressure. Those who are taking blood thinners and thyroid medications also should discuss with the doctor before taking this supplementation. It is not recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding women, and children.