Coenzyme Q10, also known as CoQ10 or ubiquinone, is a substance needed for the production of energy in cells. It is present in most living organisms.
Put simply, any human physiological process that involves expending energy requires CoQ10. For this reason, it is found in every region of the body (heart, stomach, kidneys …), hence its common name, ubiquinone, from the Latin word ubique meaning ‘everywhere’.
CoQ10 is partly produced by the body and partly absorbed from the diet. Sources include beef, pickled herring, chicken and broccoli, as well as dietary supplementsspecially developed to maximise ubiquinone intake.
Taking these supplements will, of course, mean you benefit more from CoQ10’s many virtues, but in some cases, supplements are taken specifically to compensate for deficiency: for example, statins prescribed for reducing high cholesterol levels can result in inadequate ubiquinone levels.
Ubiquinol is simply the reduced form of coenzyme Q10: when ubiquinone is absorbed by the body, it gets converted into ubiquinol.
It is this compound, with its ability to exchange electrons, that ultimately participates in the Krebs cycle (a metabolic pathway essential to cellular energy production) and in the respiratory chain.
Both substances are effective at increasing blood levels of ubiquinol. However, in the case of ubiquinone, not all of it is absorbed in the gut. The more easily-assimilated ubiquinol therefore offers the advantage of being a directly active compound.
By way of example, a daily dose of 200mg of CoQ10 will increase blood levels of ubiquinol by around 60%, compared with 150% with the same dose of ubiquinol (1). But what exactly does CoQ10 do in the body?
Firstly, coenzyme Q10 combats hypertension - the abnormal increase in the pressure of blood pushing against artery walls. Research has shown that ubiquinone is able to reduce both the systolic reading (the highest pressure when blood is pushed round the body) and the diastolic reading (the lowest such pressure) in hypertensive individuals. (2)
Coenzyme Q10 is thus recognized for promoting a healthy heart and cardiovascular system. (3-8) Indeed, in Japan and many European countries, it is used medically to treat problems of this kind.
It’s important to note that with advancing age, there’s a decline in the body’s production of coenzyme Q10. Lower levels of ubiquinone are generally observed in older patients (or those suffering from hypertension, diabetes, heart problems, cancer …).
Some studies suggest that CoQ10 helps to stem the growth of certain tumors, as well as relieve migraines and reduce the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. (9-13) Its antioxidant properties may also facilitate post-exercise recovery and reduce feelings of fatigue. (14-16)
In the current context, we naturally want to ensure our immune defenses are strong. It just so happens that ubiquinol has significant capacity for boosting immunity.
The reason for this is that the tissues and cells involved in immune function have considerable energy needs and therefore require a substantial supply of CoQ10. One study maintained that “CoQ10 plays an important role in stimulating the immune system and physical performance”. (17)
It’s also interesting to look at the findings of a study published in January 2019. The objective of this clinical trial, randomised over three influenza seasons, was to determine if acute influenza infection is associated with depletion of CoQ10. The researchers involved found that CoQ10 levels were significantly lower in patients with acute influenza infection than in healthy controls. (18)
In 2012, researchers had examined the link between CoQ10 levels and clinical outcome in children hospitalised with pandemic influenza H1N1. This study similarly suggested that CoQ10 levels in children with influenza were significantly decreased compared with healthy controls. (19)
All the evidence suggests that ubiquinone also promotes high blood levels of cytotoxic T lymphocytes which destroy infected cells.
One study from 1993, which evaluated the effect of coenzyme Q10 on immune response, concluded that the T4/T8 ratio of lymphocytes increased following administration of coenzyme Q10. (20)
This first supplement, rich in coenzyme Q10, was developed to improve cardiovascular health and promote energy production. As we’ve seen, in addition to helping the heart pump blood, Co-Enzyme Q10 constitutes a valuable aid to boosting your immunity.
The supplement PQQ & Q10, is an antioxidant formulation designed to fight cognitive impairment and optimise cardiovascular function. Its high ubiquinone content will also help improve your body’s defenses.
This final supplement contains the reduced form of CoQ10, ubiquinol, known for its exceptional bioavailability. Choose Ubiquinol™ to help maintain your cardiovascular system, protect your brain from oxidative stress, increase your energy supply and boost your immune system.
Note 1:if you think you’re suffering from hypertension and cardiovascular problems, be sure to seek advice from a health professional.
Note 2: remember that it’s best to take CoQ10 supplements with food. This substance is more easily absorbed when taken with some fat.
Many people complain of always feeling tired and lacking in energy. Here’s a list of anti-fatigue foods to help restore your vitality.
It’s the king of the vitamins: vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid. Here we explore 10 of the best vitamin C-rich foods and how to make the most of their benefits.
Vitamin A is key among those vitamins considered essential for health. Here are our recommendations for ensuring an adequate intake.
For the first one or two days of life, a new-born baby’s nutrition normally comes from colostrum, the first - and highly immunostimulant - form of mother’s milk. How, as adults, can we rediscover the benefits of this exceptional substance?
Rich in bioactive compounds, mushrooms have been consumed for food and used medicinally for thousands of years. Read on to discover 5 medicinal mushrooms that can really boost your immune system.
SuperSmart interviewed Lisa Salis, an expert in naturopathy and nutrition. Using video-conferencing, the qualified therapist offered her advice on how to get through this period and, quite simply, how to live better.