Coenzyme Q10 is a powerful antioxidant that supports the proper functioning of the body. Although it is mainly associated with preparations that delay the aging process, the scope of its action is much wider.
Coenzyme Q10 - what is it?
Coenzyme Q10 is also known as ubiquinone. It is a chemical compound belonging to the group of cofactors, which determines the action of certain enzymes. It is a substance naturally produced by the human body.
It is an essential component of the mitochondrion, which is responsible for energy production and participates in the production of ATP. Ubiquinone is involved in metabolic changes, and more precisely participates in the Krebs cycle.
It is made from phenylalanine and tyrosine, and the production of the compound takes place in the liver. The synthesis of coenzyme Q10 improves under the influence of B vitamins.
Ubiquinone is well soluble in fats and alcohols, but does not dissolve in water. The substance is resistant to UV radiation and temperature up to 50 degrees Celsius. At a higher temperature, damage to the compound occurs.
The level of coenzyme Q10 decreases with age, and the process of reducing the content of substances in the body can be observed from about 30 years of age.
Sources of coenzyme Q10
Are you wondering in which natural products coenzyme Q10 is present? It is widely available in foods that everyone uses every day. The sources of ubiquinone include i.a.:
- oily fish (tuna, salmon, mackerel),
- legume seeds,
- wholegrain products,
- high-quality oils,
- green vegetables (spinach, broccoli, Brussels sprouts).
It should be remembered, however, that heat treatment leads to the destruction of an important part of ubiquinone, contained in food.
Coenzyme Q10 - properties
Coenzyme Q10 is of great biological importance. It is responsible for the transfer of electrons in cells of internal organs and tissues. It enables the production of large amounts of energy that is needed for metabolic processes. In addition, the compound stabilizes cell membranes and may contribute to reducing their susceptibility to harmful factors.
Ubiquinone has antioxidant properties and thus can delay aging and prevent protein and DNA damage. It can also reduce oxidative stress and support the fight against free radicals in the body.
At the same time, the compound can positively affect the immune system and provide cells with the necessary energy to protect against pathogens.
Coenzyme Q10 is also distinguished by high repair capabilities, thanks to which it can accelerate regenerative processes. Thus, the compound was used as a component of rejuvenating preparations. Thanks to its antioxidant properties, it takes care of the complexion and beautiful appearance. Provides elasticity and firmness of the skin.
Ubiquinone can also reduce the level of "bad" LDL cholesterol and improve metabolism. Research also suggests that coenzyme Q10 may have a beneficial effect on the body in case of circulatory failure. The substance can also affect the oxygenation and nutrition of cells, which is important for physically active people. Ubiquinone can positively affect exercise capacity among athletes, but coenzyme Q10 itself does not cause an increase in muscle mass.
Deficiencies of coenzyme Q10 are associated with excessive oxidative stress, to which people who work physically, live in a polluted environment and athletes who perform intense physical exertion are exposed. This is due to the disruption of the process of natural synthesis of ubiquinone.
The symptoms of coenzyme Q10 deficiency include:
- weakness and general fatigue,
- decrease in immunity, and thus an increase in susceptibility to infections,
- decrease in physical fitness, associated with a deficiency of energy necessary to make effort.
Long-term ubiquinone deficiency can also contribute to heart disorders.
It should be remembered that the above symptoms may also indicate other ailments, so it is always worth consulting a doctor in case of all kinds of undesirable symptoms.
Who is coenzyme Q10 supplementation recommended for?
The use of supplements containing coenzyme Q10 is recommended:
- for people over 30 years of age, when the natural production of the compound decreases. First of all, it is recommended to use ubiquinone by the elderly, in whom the natural synthesis of the substance is at the lowest level,
- for people exposed to oxidative stress, working in harsh conditions and living in a polluted environment,
- for athletes undertaking regular, intensive training.
Supplementation with the compound can also be used by people who care about improving the condition of the skin and complexion, as well as supporting the functioning of the whole body.
Widely available dietary supplements rich in coenzyme Q10 contain from 30 to 100 mg of the compound. For younger people, lower doses of preparations are recommended, while in the case of older people, the recommended supplementation may reach up to 300 mg of ubiquinone per day.
Always follow the guidelines on the packaging of the preparation you are taking. Each time it is also worth discussing supplementation with a doctor.
Which coenzyme Q10 to choose?
There are various forms of coenzyme Q10 available to humans, both those for oral use and those intended for external use, on the skin. Ubiquinone is used in cosmetic preparations and in dietary supplements, and both one- and multi-component preparations are available on the market. Some products are enriched with soy lecithin or vitamin E. Each preparation is also distinguished by a slightly different composition. So which coenzyme Q10 will be the best?
It is difficult to answer this question unequivocally, because everything depends on the individual needs of the consumer.
However, it can be stated that the best dietary supplement containing ubiquinone is one that does not contain additional, unnecessary substances such as fillers or flavor enhancers. Good supplement is carefully researched and safe. It is not worth reaching for the specifics of unknown companies of unknown origin.
When choosing a preparation, you should not be guided by the price, but by the quality and effectiveness of the product.
Contraindications to the use of ubiquinone
Coenzyme Q10 is a compound that naturally occurs in the human body, therefore its intake does not cause side effects that could threaten health or life.
Nevertheless, you should always use the preparations in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions and do not exceed the recommended portions of the products. It is also a good idea to consult your doctor before starting supplementation.
Coenzyme Q10 used in excess can lead to adverse reactions such as digestive system ailments, loss of appetite or insomnia. It can also contribute to headaches and fatigue.
Particular caution should be exercised by people taking warfarin - an anticoagulant drug. Coenzyme Q10 may interact with this substance. Also, people with low blood pressure should be careful using ubiquinone, as this compound can increase the effect of antihypertensive drugs.