CoQ10 is also known as "ubiquinone" or ubidecarenone, but most commonly as CoQ10. This substance is an essential component of mitochondria, the energy producing unit of our body cells. Every bodily process -- including all immune responses -- requires CoQ10.
The body manufactures CoQ10, but many people don't produce it very efficiently due to the highly complicated biochemical process involved. The quantity of CoQ10 obtained from dietary sources is often insufficient. Poor diets can lead to a CoQ10 deficiency, as can aging.
How can CoQ10 supplementation help individuals?
CoQ10 is a necessary component of the energy producing process of every cell. No other substance can be substituted for it, and without it there literally is no life. In order for the body to produce an immune response, a constant supply of energy is required, and to produce this energy, a continuous and adequate amount of CoQ10 must be present.
CoQ10 also has very strong antioxidant power. Antioxidants protect against free radical damage. Simply defined, a free radical is a highly reactive molecule that can bind and damage (or destroy) body cells. Oxidative free radical damage is what makes us age. Antioxidants can help neutralize free radicals. Antioxidants seem to work best in combination, and CoQ10 does work synergistically with other antioxidants, such as vitamin C, vitamin E and beta-carotene.
Other potential benefits of CoQ10
CoQ10 may have a place in cardiovascular health. By supplying cellular energy to all cells, CoQ10 improves oxygenation of the heart muscles. There are also studies in progress evaluating CoQ10 with respect to blood pressure, and studies evaluating CoQ10 in statin drug induced CoQ10 deficiency.
The main detoxifying organ in our bodies is the liver. In order to accomplish the detoxification, continuous cellular energy is required, and CoQ10 helps support this cellular energy.
CoQ10 is also important in supporting mitochondrial function within the cells.
Is CoQ10 safe?
Long term use of CoQ10 has exhibited no adverse effects. It is well-tolerated by the body, and the only reported side effect has been slight nausea or discomfort, which is extremely rare.
Why might I need to supplement with CoQ10?
CoQ10 is a totally natural substance and is found in many foods. Foods richest in this nutrient are organ meats such as liver, heart or kidney and certain fish, mainly sardines and mackerel. Other sources include eggs, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, corn and sesame seeds. Various nuts such as pistachios, walnuts, peanuts, chestnuts and almonds also contain CoQ10. Unfortunately, foods that are cooked or processed have their levels of CoQ10 reduced.
Sugar, starch, soy, wheat, casein, gluten, milk, corn, egg, preservatives, yeast, gelatin, flavorings, colorings, peanuts, tree nuts or fish.
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