(NaturalNews) Co-enzyme Q10 or CoQ10 (also known as ubiquinone) is an essential nutrient found in every cell in the human body. It plays a vital role in producing energy in the mitochondria, meaning it helps provide energy to all parts of the body. CoQ10 has been cited as producing positive effects in people with cancer, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease, although perhaps the most prominent benefit CoQ10 can provide is for the heart.
Co-Enzyme Q10 and the Heart
Here are just some of the ways CoQ10 has been connected with cardiovascular health:
- In a study which included 641 participants with congestive heart failure, those who received CoQ10 instead of a placebo reported a noticeable reduction in symptom severity and fewer hospitalizations. Another study also showed daily CoQ10 supplements could improve symptoms and quality of life in patients with heart conditions.
- A number of studies have shown that CoQ10 may improve the function of the heart in relation to major heart surgeries like a coronary bypass or valve replacement.
- Those with heart conditions or heart failure often have low levels of CoQ10 in heart muscle cells.
- CoQ10 is known for its strong antioxidant properties, which can protect the cardiovascular system from free radical and oxidation damage. This is extremely important for anyone concerned about the health of their heart.
- Some preliminary studies have suggested that CoQ10 can lower blood pressure in hypertension patients. This could have a positive effect on heart health, even before there has been heart failure.
The richest sources of CoQ10 are animal tissues, particularly red meat and organ meat from animals that are raised on quality pasture. However, there are other natural sources of CoQ10 for those who choose not to eat these foods. These include sesame oil, sesame seeds, peanuts, mackerel, whole soybeans, walnuts, pistachios, spinach and broccoli.
Who Needs CoQ10 Supplements?
Although the body is capable of producing its own supply of CoQ10, deficiency is still possible if you have a metabolic disorder, if your body uses more than is available, or if your diet is low in CoQ10. For those who have trouble getting enough natural CoQ10 in their diet, or if they have a condition that could benefit from a higher level of CoQ10, it may be beneficial to take a supplement.
CoQ10 supplements may be especially beneficial to people on certain medications, like statin drugs for lowering cholesterol, which are notorious for draining the body of CoQ10 and weakening the heart. Heavy use of NSAIDS (like ibuprofen) may also warrant a CoQ10 supplement because of their link to heart failure.
The typical dosage for CoQ10 supplements ranges from 30 mg to 200 mg daily, with heart patients receiving doses in the higher range. Most people without major heart conditions find 30-100 mg to be appropriate. Remember that if you do have any health conditions or if you are on medication, it's best to talk with your physician before taking any supplements.
Elizabeth Walling is a freelance writer specializing in health and family nutrition. She is a strong believer in natural living as a way to improve health and prevent modern disease. She enjoys thinking outside of the box and challenging common myths about health and wellness. You can visit her blog to learn more: www.livingthenourishedlife.com/2009/10/welcome.html
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