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What is coenzyme Q10?
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) – also known as ubiquinone is a vitamin-like substance. It is presented in every cell of the body, with the heart, liver cells and sperm cells containing the greatest amount. Your body makes CoQ10, and your cells use it to produce energy your body needs for cell growth and maintenance. It also functions as an antioxidant, which protects the body from damage caused by harmful molecules.
CoQ10 is needed to process oxygen in cells, and to generate energy-rich molecules. Without CoQ10, the energy hidden in food molecules could not be converted into a form of energy in muscle cells, including those of the heart. After the age of 20, levels of CoQ10 start to decrease as dietary CoQ10 is absorbed less efficiently from the intestines and its production in body cells starts to fall.
CoQ10 is naturally present in small amounts in a wide variety of foods, but levels are particularly high in organ meats such as heart, liver, and kidney, as well as beef, soy oil, sardines, mackerel, and peanuts.
Low levels of CoQ10mean that cells do not receive all the energy they need. As a result, they function at a sub-optimal level and are likely to become diseased, age and weakness.
Research suggests that falling CoQ10 levels play a significant role in age-related medical conditions such as coronary heart diseases.
CoQ10 is now also being added to skin-care preparation to reduce skin damage that leads to premature wrinkles, especially following exposure to UVA in sunlight.
Antioxidant: CoQ-10 acts together with vitamin E to form a powerful antioxidant defence against oxidation damage to body fats- including those in the circulation. Like other antioxidants, CoQ10 seems to protect against hardening and furring up of the arteries to reduce heart diseases and it’s also helpful for those with Raynaud’s syndrome. (It is highly recommended to be taken in conjunction with vitamin E).
Reducing statin side effects: CoQ-10 is especially important for people taking statin drug to lower their cholesterol level. Taking Co-Q10 does not affect the cholesterol-lowering action of statin drugs.
Heart Disease: Biopsies of heart muscles from patients with various forms of heart disease have shown that up to 75 per cent are deficient in CoQ-10. The more severe the heart disease is; the lower levels of CoQ-10 were found. It has therefore been used by doctors in the USA and Japan to treat coronary heart disease and heart failure.
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension): Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure; CoQ10 can reduce hypertension by improving the elasticity and reactivity of the blood vessel wall.
Sperm Quality: CoQ-10 is vital for the production of the energy sperm need for motility. Men with deduced sperm motility showed significant improvement in sperm function when taking CoQ-10supplements, and in fertility treatment their sperm were over twice as likely to fertilize an egg compared with those not taking CoQ-10.
Immune Function: CoQ-10 supplement – both given alone and with vitamin B6 – increase the number of antibodies made after vaccination, and also increase the number of certain immune cells to boost immunity.
Weight Loss: It may also be useful in weight loss by stimulating lipid metabolism in mitochondria.
Gum Disease: Diseased gum tissue has significantly lower levels of CoQ-10 compared with healthy gum tissue from the same patient. CoQ-10 is able to reverse periodontal gum disease and save teeth scheduled for surgery.
Reduce the risk of muscular dystrophy.
Speeds exercise recovery and reduced Chest pain caused by exercise.
Migraine: CoQ10 has been studied for use in treating migraines.