Your Heart Health and CoQ10
Heart disease is the leading cause of mortality in developed countries, and atherosclerosis is the major underlying cause of heart. While many times, lifestyle and diet issues can help, there are more and more people taking statins, some of the most widely prescribed drugs in the world, to reduce LDL (bad cholesterol levels) and the risk of heart attacks or other cardiovascular crisises.
Enter coenzyme Q10, the most common coenzyme in human mitochondria. CoQ10 is a fat-soluble vitamin-like essential nutrient that is naturally present in every cell of the body. Its primary responsibility is for the production of cellular energy (ATP), the source of the body’s energy.
Studies suggest that CoQ10 serum levels are depleted during statin therapy, by up to 49 percent after only 30 days.
The problem is in the mechanism by which statins work. While they may be effective in lowering cholesterol, they block the action of the enzyme involved in the synthesis of cholesterol called HMG-CoA reductase. The same enzyme is also involved in the production of coQ10.
What many people are unaware of is the fact that when CoQ10 is depleted it causes the LDL cholesterol to become oxidized. This in turn sets off a cascade of events making the LDL cholesterol drill holes in the arterial wall causing major inflammation. This inflammation sets you up for an increased risk of getting a heart attack or stroke.
This a major reason why taking statins drugs are no guarantee you will not die of a heart attack.
Low coQ10 levels in the body—as a normal consequence of aging or statin therapy—are linked to a number of health issues including Parkinson’s Disease, periodontal disease, migraines, chronic fatigue, muscle weakness, a lack of interest in exercise, and others. Research shows, supplementing with CoQ10 can help avoid these issues.
In general, CoQ10 supplementation is essential as we age. Most people make approximately 500 mg of CoQ10 daily in the body, at least up until age 21. Between ages 21 and 30, levels of CoQ10 begin to drop, causing the degeneration of cells, which may contribute to age-related diseases and conditions.