Co-Q-10 is a chemical compound that has a dual function in energy production. Yet it has very poor absorption, so most forms of Co-Q-10 sold in stores likely won’t work.
How Does Co-Q-10 Do?
First in nearly every cell in the body, Co-Q-10 carries fuel across the mitochondria membrane(the energy generating part of every cell) to generate energy. Second it neutralizes free radicals produced during energy production, preventing oxidative stress (essentially cellular rusting). Co-Q-10 has been claimed to boost energy levels, reverse heart failure, slow aging, and other claims, but in clinical outcome trials has only been proven to slow the progression of Parkinson’s disease.
Co-Q-10 comes in two primary forms, ubiquinone (the most commonly sold oxidized form) and ubiquinol (the physiologically active and more expensive reduced form). The body converts these back and forth millions of times every second, so I truly doubt the benefit of paying extra for the reduced form if you have an otherwise healthy diet and supplement routine.
Although Co-Q-10′s anti-aging potential seems fascinating from laboratory studies, and it has been shown to slow the progression of Parkinson’s disease in randomized clinical trials, we are still waiting for clinical evidence that it truly makes a difference in preventing major health problems, like heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and other neurological diseases. On the positive side, it has been studied in multiple clinical trials and appears very safe with normal dosing.
By far the most common use is when taking Co-Q-10 with statin medications that lower cholesterol (Lipitor, Crestor, Simvastatin, Zocor, Pravachol, etc.), as lowering cholesterol production typically lowers Co-Q-10 levels by up to 20%, too. No proven harm has been documented from dropping Co-Q-10 levels in this way, but there is growing evidence that restoring Co-Q-10 to normal levels with makes good preventative sense, in fact, in the United Kingdom and Germany, statin medications are prescribed with Co-Q-10 ! And anecdotally, many of my patients on statins report that it boosts their energy.
If you want to try Co-Q-10 for energy production support, then I it makes good sense to try it. Most commonly though, I recommend Co-Q-10 when my patients are taking a statin medication, or for specific neurological problems, or for mitochondrial dysfunction issues.
Co-Q-10 Absorption (or lack thereof)
Absorption is an important consideration with Co-Q-10 supplementation, as regular inexpensive crystalline Co-Q-10 only has a 1% absorption when taking in pill form. Co-Q-10 soluble in oil has a 4% absorption, and nano-lipid spheres have reported 8% absorption. So although cheap Co-Q-10 in tablet form may be 1/3 the cost of more expensive nano-lipid sphere forms, the very poor absorption makes it in reality much more expensive. So buyer beware when choosing your Co-Q-10 products.
For a Co-Q-10 product with excellent absorption, I recommend Q-Best 50