Most people are familiar with the cardiovascular benefits associated with coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) supplements. But research has shown that the benefits of CoQ10 go far beyond heart health. Here are four other ways supplemental CoQ10 can help promote optimal health and well-being.
- Migraine Prevention in Children and Adults. Although it may be surprising to some, migraines afflict about 1 in 10 kids. Fortunately, researchers at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center may have an answer for some of them.
These researchers examined the blood levels of coenzyme Q10 in 1,550 children ages 3 to 22 who had migraines, and they found that a third were deficient in this important antioxidant. They gave those kids supplemental CoQ10 (1–3 mg/kg or 0.5–1.5 mg/lb of body weight per day) and followed them for about three months. Follow-up exams revealed that the CoQ10 supplement dramatically reduced the frequency of migraines and cut headache disability scores in half! An earlier study of adults who took 150 mg of CoQ10 daily showed similar benefits.
- Help for Dry Mouth Syndrome. Also known as xerostomia, dry mouth syndrome affects an estimated 30 percent of people over the age of 65. Characterized by a lack of saliva production, it can cause difficulty swallowing, sore throat, and bad breath, as well as tooth decay and oral infections. All too often, this condition is triggered by drugs—hundreds of prescription medications, including antihypertensives, antidepressants, antihistamines, and diuretics, are linked with chronic dry mouth. Sjögren’s syndrome, nerve damage to the head and neck, and chemotherapy drugs and radiation may also contribute to the problem.
One study found that CoQ10 supplements can be a simple and effective solution for dry mouth syndrome. When volunteers were given 100 mg of either ubiquinone or ubiquinol CoQ10 daily for a month they had “significantly improved salivary secretion.” Though both forms were helpful, I recommend ubiquinol, as it’s the best absorbed and most bioavailable of the two.
- Slow Down Hearing Loss. Italian researchers divided 56- to 74-year-olds with presbycusis (age-related changes in the ears that lead to diminished hearing) into three groups and gave them daily doses of coenzyme Q10 (160 mg), vitamin E (50 mg), or a placebo. After 30 days, the group taking CoQ10 had marked improvements in both low and high frequencies on audiometry testing. Those who took vitamin E had a little improvement, but the placebo group’s tests were essentially unchanged. If you are experiencing any degree of hearing loss—regardless of your age—CoQ10 supplements are worth a shot.
- Reduction of Muscle Injuries. Japanese researchers examined the effects of CoQ10 supplements on muscles after a bout of rigorous physical activity—in this case, 5.5 hours of the martial art kendo every day for six days. After every workout period, study participants were given either 300 mg of CoQ10 or a placebo. Blood markers indicative of muscle injury were markedly lower in study volunteers taking the supplement compared to their counterparts who received a placebo. The conclusion was that CoQ10 supplements could significantly “reduce exercise-induced muscular injury in athletes.”
Obviously, the majority of us don’t exercise to this extreme. The good news is, you don’t have to be a professional athlete to reap the many health benefits of CoQ10. My recommendation for the general population is 60–120 mg per day. At this dose, CoQ10 provides superb antioxidant protection and sparks cellular energy production throughout the entire body. On the other hand, if you are a serious exerciser, need extra cardiovascular support, or use cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, I suggest you increase your daily dose to 200–300 mg.
Now it’s your turn: Do you take coenzyme Q10?