Co Enzyme Q10 – also known as CoQ10 – is a vitamin-like substance essential for life. While we normally make all the CoQ10 we need, some people – because of age, health problems or medications – can benefit from taking extra good quality CoQ10.
CoQ10 is essential to make the energy our bodies need. The final stage of making energy needs CoQ10 to shuttle the hydrogen needed to generate energy. If your levels of CoQ10 are low this can be felt as low energy, weak muscles and general fatigue.
CoQ10 is also an exceptional antioxidant protecting cells and fats from free radicals. The most important antioxidant function is to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol as it circulates in the body. This is a critical part in our natural defences against blockages in heart arteries and other blood vessels.
Possibly the most common reason for CoQ10 supplementation is for those using cholesterol-lowering statin medication. The side effects of statins are so common they are a diagnosable disease called statin myopathy. The most common side effects are muscle stiffness, pain and weakness. This can also cause general fatigue, which often feels like a lack of motivation.
Statins effectively inhibit the enzyme needed to make cholesterol. Unfortunately, this enzyme – called HMG-CoA reductase – is also needed to make CoQ10. Blocking this enzyme reduces cholesterol but also CoQ10 by as much as 50 per cent.
Drug companies are well aware of this problem and hold patents for combining CoQ10 with statins. Until such drugs are available I recommend those on statins supplement it with 100-200mg of naturally fermented CoQ10. Be aware our retail market is now flooded with lower grade semi-synthetic CoQ10 usually sold in higher doses at much lower prices.
Adding a good CoQ10 alongside statins will in most cases protect against and often reverse existing statin side effects. My favourite is the well-researched and patented US product CoQsol. If you are unsure feel free to phone or email your questions.
John Arts (B.Soc.Sci, Dip Tch, Adv.Dip.Nut.Med) is a nutritional medicine practitioner and founder of Abundant Health Ltd. For questions or advice contact John on 0800 423559 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org Join his full weekly newsletter at: www.abundant.co.nz.