Resveratrol and Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) have risen in popularity as potential supplements to combat aging. While studies focused on humans and longevity remain very limited, both supplements show potential to lower blood glucose, an important biomarker associated with aging and longevity.

Why our health decline excellerates in our 60's.

Many healthcare providers suggest individuals over the age of 50 take at least 100 mg of CoQ10 supplement per day and add an additional 100 mg for every decade of life thereafter. If you don't supplement, at age 80, it's believed that the levels of CoQ10 are lower than they were at birth!


Combat Mitochondrial Decline with CoQ10


What’s more, the results of the research indicate that high levels of CoQ10 are directly linked with lower cardiovascular risk due to their relationship with cholesterol, particles that the coenzyme connects with to lower the risk of a heart attack.

A trial at the University of Colorado Boulder, published by the American Heart Association, tried a 20-milligram-a-day supplement with Q10 in the over-60s. The result brought benefits to the endothelium and a rise in blood flow. According to the main author, Matthew Rossman, “therapies like this one can be a true promise for reducing the risk of cardiovascular illnesses related to age.”

Another relevant finding of the study is that women have greater deficits of CoQ10 than men. Nils Bomer, from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, says that “this result needs to be studied more.” He believes that it could be related to the evolution of the muscles after menopause, but that it is a field that requires more exploration, as well as the effects on cognitive capacity in general. This will be the subject of his next project.


9 Benefits of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10)

Written by Arlene Semeco, MS, RD on October 12, 2017

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Coenzyme Q10, also known as CoQ10, is a compound that helps generate energy in your cells.

Your body produces CoQ10 naturally, but its production tends to decrease with age. Fortunately, you can also get CoQ10 through supplements or foods.

Health conditions like heart disease, brain disorders, diabetes, and cancer have been linked to low levels of CoQ10.

It is not clear whether low levels of CoQ10 cause these diseases or are a result of them.

One thing is for certain: plenty of research has revealed CoQ10’s wide range of health benefits.

Here is all you need to know about CoQ10.

What Is CoQ10?

CoQ10 is a compound made by your body and stored in the mitochondria of your cells.

The mitochondria are in charge of producing energy. They also protect cells from oxidative damage and disease-causing bacteria or viruses.

CoQ10 production decreases as you age. Thus, older people seem to be deficient in this compound.

Some other causes of CoQ10 deficiency include :

Nutritional deficiencies, such as vitamin B6 deficiency

Genetic defects in CoQ10 synthesis or utilization.

Increased demands by tissues as a consequence of disease.

Mitochondrial diseases.

Oxidative stress due to aging.

Side effects of statin treatments.

Research has shown that CoQ10 plays several key roles in your body.

One of its primary functions is to help generate energy in your cells. It’s involved in making adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is involved in energy transfer within cells.

Its other crucial role is to serve as an antioxidant and protect cells from oxidative damage.

Excessive amounts of free radicals lead to oxidative damage, which can interfere with regular cell functioning. This is known to cause many health conditions.

Given that ATP is used to carry out all the body’s functions and oxidative damage is destructive to cells, it is not surprising that some chronic diseases have been linked to low levels of CoQ10.

CoQ10 is present in every cell of your body. However, the highest concentrations are found in organs with the greatest energy demands, such as the heart, kidneys, lungs and liver.

The following is a list of the 9 main benefits of CO Q10

1.It May Help Treat Heart Failure

Heart failure is often a consequence of other heart conditions, such as coronary artery disease or high blood pressure.

These conditions can lead to increased oxidative damage and inflammation of the veins and arteries.

Heart failure occurs when these problems affect the heart to the point that it is unable to regularly contract, relax or pump blood through the body.

To make matters worse, some treatments for heart failure have undesirable side effects, such as low blood pressure, while others could even further reduce CoQ10 levels.

In a study of 420 people with heart failure, treatment with CoQ10 for two years improved their symptoms and reduced their risk of dying from heart problems.

Also, another study treated 641 people with CoQ10 or a placebo for a year. At the end of the study, those in the CoQ10 group had been hospitalized less frequently for worsening heart failure and had fewer serious complications.

It seems that treatment with CoQ10 could assist with restoring optimal levels of energy production, reduce oxidative damage and improve heart function, all of which can aid the treatment of heart failure .


CoQ10 seems to help treat heart failure by improving heart function, increasing ATP production and

limiting oxidative damage.

2.It Could Help With Fertility

Female fertility decreases with age due to a decline in the number and quality of available eggs.

CoQ10 is directly involved in this process. As you age, CoQ10 production slows, making the body less effective at protecting the eggs from oxidative damage.

Supplementing with CoQ10 seems to help and may even reverse this age-related decline in egg quality and quantity.

Similarly, male sperm is susceptible to the effects of oxidative damage, which may result in reduced sperm count, poor sperm quality and infertility

Several studies have concluded that supplementing with CoQ10 may improve sperm quality, activity and concentration by increasing antioxidant protection


The antioxidant properties of CoQ10 could help improve sperm quality and reduce

the decline in the number and quality of eggs in women.

3.It Might Help Keep Your Skin Young

Your skin is the largest organ in your body, and it’s widely exposed to damaging agents that contribute to aging.

These agents can be internal or external. Some internal damaging factors include cellular damage and hormonal imbalances. External factors include environmental agents, such as UV rays

Harmful elements can lead to reduced skin moisture and protection from environmental aggressors, as well as the thinning of the layers of the skin.

Applying CoQ10 directly to the skin can reduce the damage from internal and external agents by increasing energy production in skin cells and promoting antioxidant protection.

In fact, CoQ10 applied directly to the skin has been shown to reduce oxidative damage caused by UV rays and even decrease the depth of wrinkles.

4. It could reduce headaches

Abnormal mitochondrial function can lead to increased calcium uptake by the cells, the excessive production of free radicals, and decreased antioxidant protection. This can result in low energy in the brain cells and may contribute to migraine 

Since CoQ10 lives mainly in the mitochondria of the cells, it has been shown it may help improve mitochondrial function and may be beneficial for the treatment of migraine 

One review of five studies found that CoQ10 may effectively reduce the duration and frequency of migraine in children and adults 

Another small study of 80 people found that people taking 100 milligrams (mg) of CoQ10 daily experienced a significant reduction in the frequency, severity, and duration of migraine, with no adverse side effects reported

Additionally, one 2017 study showed that CoQ10 might help reduce the frequency of headaches and make them shorter and less severe 


Research shows that CoQ10 supplementation may be effective at reducing the frequency, duration, and severity of migraine headaches.

5. It could help with exercise performance

Oxidative stress can affect muscle function and, thus, exercise performance 

Similarly, the abnormal mitochondrial function can reduce muscle energy, making it hard for muscles to contract efficiently and sustain exercise 

CoQ10 may help exercise performance by decreasing oxidative stress in the cells and improving mitochondrial function 

One study found that CoQ10 supplementation may have helped inhibit oxidative stress and markers of muscle and liver damage in adolescent elite swimmers during their competition phase 

Moreover, supplementing with CoQ10 may help reduce fatigue, which could also potentially improve exercise performance 


CoQ10 may help improve exercise performance by supporting mitochondrial function, decreasing oxidative stress, and reducing fatigue.

6. It may help with diabetes

Oxidative stress can induce cell damage. This can result in metabolic diseases like diabetes 

Abnormal mitochondrial function has also been linked to insulin resistance 

CoQ10 has been suggested to improve insulin sensitivity and regulate blood sugar levels 

One review of 13 studies showed that CoQ10 could reduce fasting blood sugar and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), a marker of long-term blood sugar control, in people with type 2 diabetes. Moreover, it may also improve certain risk factors for heart disease, including triglyceride and HDL (good) cholesterol levels 

Another study in people with diabetic neuropathy — a type of nerve damage that can occur in people with diabetes — found that taking 100 mg of CoQ10 daily for 12 weeks may have improved HbA1c levels and insulin resistance 

Not only that, but it also may have reduced markers of oxidative stress and harmful compounds, such as advanced glycation end products, compared to a placebo


CoQ10 could help promote blood sugar control and prevent insulin resistance. It may also decrease oxidative stress and certain risk factors for heart disease in people with diabetes.

7. It might play a role in cancer prevention

Some research suggests that oxidative stress could be involved in the development of cancer 

According to some test-tube studies, CoQ10 could prevent oxidative stress, support immune function, and block the growth of cancer cells 

Interestingly, people with cancer have been shown to have lower levels of CoQ10.

Some studies suggest low levels of CoQ10 may be associated with a higher risk of certain types of cancer in some older studies, including breast and prostate cancer 

Several newer studies have also suggested this with regard to lung cancer 

Some studies have suggested that supplementing with CoQ10 could reduce markers of inflammation and improve the quality of life in people with breast cancer 

That said, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that CoQ10 has not been shown to be of value as a cancer treatment, so more research needs to be conducted before a definitive claim can be made 


CoQ10 could reduce oxidative stress, which may be involved in cancer development. Though more research is needed, some studies also show that low levels of CoQ10 could be linked to an increased risk of certain types of cancer.

8. It may be good for the brain

Mitochondria are the main energy generators of brain cells 

Mitochondrial function tends to decrease with age, which can lead to the death of brain cells and contribute to conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s 

Unfortunately, the brain is very susceptible to oxidative damage due to its high fatty acid content and its high demand for oxygen 

This oxidative damage enhances the production of harmful compounds that could affect memory, cognition, and physical functions 

CoQ10 may reduce these harmful compounds, possibly slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, according to some animal studies 

However, more research on humans is needed.


CoQ10 can protect against oxidative damage in the brain, which could potentially protect against cognitive decline. However, more studies in humans are needed.

9.Lastly, people with low levels of CoQ10 seems to be more likely to develop skin cancer.

Of all your organs, your lungs have the most contact with oxygen. This makes them very susceptible to oxidative damage.

Increased oxidative damage in the lungs and poor antioxidant protection, including low levels of CoQ10, can result in lung diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma 

Furthermore, some older studies have found that people with these conditions tend to have lower levels of CoQ10 

A 2005 study demonstrated that supplementing with CoQ10 may have reduced inflammation in individuals who had asthma, as well as their need for steroid medications to treat it 

Another study found that supplementing with CoQ10 and creatine — a compound found in muscle cells — may have improved functional performance, perception of shortness of breath, and body composition in people with COPD 


CoQ10 could reduce oxidative damage in the lungs, which may benefit respiratory conditions like asthma or COPD.

CoQ10: The Longevity Factor

While best known for heart health, extensive research shows that CoQ10 boosts cellular energy output throughout the body.  By increasing the efficiency of our mitochondrial powerhouses, CoQ10 reduces oxidant damage and provides protection for every cell in the body. Laboratory studies have demonstrated that CoQ10 can extend life span, suggesting important longevity benefits for humans.

Scientifically reviewed by: Dr. Gary Gonzalez, MD, in May 2022. Written by: Lina Buchanan.

Would you like to potentially add 9 years to your life expectancy? That's what research on the nutrient coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) implies is possible.

CoQ10 is well known for its heart and vascular health benefits.2 By helping the cellular powerhouses known as mitochondria burn fuel more effectively, CoQ10 is able to protect not only the heart but every cell in your body.

That's why scientists are growing increasingly fascinated with the role of CoQ10 in tissues beyond the cardiovascular system.2 There is evidence for CoQ10's protective effects in the brain and nervous system, in asthma and chronic lung disease, in diabetes and the metabolic syndrome, on ocular health, and even on the aging immune system.

Most excitingly, there's early support for the idea that CoQ10 supplementation can extend the life span of both primitive animals and mammals, laying the groundwork for a similar pro-longevity effect in humans.

CoQ10 Extends Life Span

According to the mitochondrial theory of aging, oxidant damage to the mitochondria is at the root of aging itself. Simply put, the more oxidative damage to mitochondria, the shorter the life span of the individual.

Therefore, if we can make mitochondria burn energy more cleanly and efficiently, we can decelerate the aging process. That would mean not only longer life, but a healthier one.

CoQ10 is an essential component of the mitochondrial energy transfer system. When CoQ10 levels fall, mitochondrial dysfunction skyrockets, and aging is accelerated.

However, when CoQ10 is added back to ailing or aging mitochondria, their function rebounds. Studies show that when supplemented with CoQ10, older worms in the species C. elegans experience a slowing down of the aging process and an extended life span.

Even studies that don't show life span extension demonstrate a return to youthful behaviors and functions in response to CoQ10 supplementation.

These benefits aren't restricted to primitive invertebrates, however. Research demonstrates that mice supplemented with CoQ10 live longer. In one case, supplemented animals experienced an 11.7% increase in mean life span, and a 24% increase in maximum life span. That increase translates into the equivalent of humans gaining over 9 years, based on today's life expectancy of 78.5 years.

The benefits of CoQ10 supplementation in mice aren't restricted solely to extending the quantity of life, however. Lifelong dietary supplementation with CoQ10 decreased objective measures of aging even in middle-aged animals.

CoQ10 appears to achieve these exceptional effects through a multi-targeted set of mechanisms.

It is now evident that CoQ10 directly influences the expression of multiple genes involved in aging, especially those regulating inflammation. This so-called "epigenetic" effect is at the very forefront of scientific attempts to understand how environmental factors such as nutrition influence our genetic load.

Taken all together, CoQ10's antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and epigenetic mechanisms combine to offer remarkable protection for a host of body systems, especially those hit hardest by mitochondrial aging.

CoQ10 Preserves Brain Structure, Slows Neurodegeneration

Mitochondrial dysfunction from chronic oxidation and the resulting chronic inflammation are a root cause of neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's, and ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease).

CoQ10 is attracting ever-increasing attention as scientists look for a way to prevent these diseases and treat their causes, rather than simply treating symptoms, which is the best that current medicine can offer.

Alzheimer's disease is the largest cause of dementia among Americans, estimated to affect more than 5 million people; it is the sixth leading cause of death. While many factors contribute to risk for Alzheimer's, age and oxidant stress in the brain are major contributors to this disease. Accumulated oxidant stress leads to production and deposition of an abnormal protein called amyloid β-peptide, which is itself a trigger for more oxidation and inflammation.

Eventually, brain cells overwhelmed by amyloid β-peptide lose their function and die, producing the loss of memory, cognition, and physical function we associate with the disease.

CoQ10 shows great promise in laboratory and animal studies of Alzheimer's disease. By slowing oxidant damage, CoQ10 is proven to reduce deposition of destructive amyloid β-peptide proteins in brain cells. It reduces the amyloid β-peptide-induced oxidation that contributes to the vicious cycle of oxidation-inflammation-oxidation that accelerates the disease process.23 Finally, and perhaps most importantly, CoQ10 added to amyloid β-peptide-afflicted brain cells causes the destructive protein to become destabilized and weakened even after it is formed.24 This unique CoQ10 mechanism has the potential for reversing Alzheimer's disease at the molecular level.

Animal studies demonstrate reduced oxidative stress and amyloid β-peptide deposition when CoQ10 is added to feed. CoQ10 supplementation in such animals improves cognitive performance and memory both with CoQ10 alone and when vitamin E is added. These studies provide a useful model of what recovery from Alzheimer's disease might look like in humans.

Human patients with Alzheimer's disease are known to have lower levels of reduced CoQ10 in their spinal fluid, an indication of the intense oxidant stress in their brains.

CoQ10 and Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's disease is the second most common aging-related disorder in the world.31 Like Alzheimer's, it is the result of oxidant stress triggering production of an abnormal, inflammatory protein. In Parkinson's the protein is called alpha-synuclein, which damages neurons in regions of the brain that control motor function as well as cognition.33,34 Symptoms include slowed movements, weakness, cognitive impairment, and eventually dementia.

CoQ10 is showing real promise in human studies of Parkinson's disease.18 Unlike current treatments, which improve symptoms without changing disease progression, CoQ10 may fundamentally alter and slow the otherwise inevitable decline of patients with Parkinson's.

For example, animal studies have shown that CoQ10 significantly reduces damage to neurons in the brain areas affected by Parkinson's disease after the animals were exposed to a pesticide that has been associated with Parkinson's development in humans.

CoQ10 at doses of 300 to 1,200 mg/day have been used in clinical research, though up to 2,400 mg/day is well tolerated. In studies using the higher doses, improvements on several Parkinson's disease rating scales have been observed. In one important study, 1,200 mg/day produced substantial slowing of disease progression compared with placebo.

A 2011 meta-analysis (a large study combining data from smaller trials) concluded that 1,200 mg/day of CoQ10 was well-tolerated by Parkinson's disease patients, and provided significant improvement on numerous measures of disease severity and progression.

CoQ10 Preserves Brain Function, Fights Migraine, Mental Illness

CoQ10 is essential not only in preventing brain structural deterioration but in maintaining normal function at all ages. Studies are revealing some startling associations in two areas of brain function in particular: migraine headaches and common mental health problems such as depression and schizophrenia.

Migraine headaches occur in an estimated 8.7 million women and 2.6 million men in the United States producing moderate to severe disability. More than 3 million women and 1 million men are estimated to suffer 1 or more attacks/per month.

The exact chain of events leading up to a migraine is unclear, but it may be related to brain energy levels, as indicated by low CoQ10 levels in people with migraines (almost 33% of a population with migraine had levels below the standard in one study).41 Studies of CoQ10 supplementation in children, adolescents, and adults show substantial decreases in the frequency of migraine episodes, number of days with migraine symptoms, headache disability, and frequency of nausea, a common feature of migraines.

CoQ10 is so effective in managing migraine headaches that it is now listed among the 11 most effective "drugs" for preventing migraines by the Canadian Headache Society.

Major depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia, long considered separate entities, are now recognized as having common roots in mitochondrial dysfunction and elevated brain oxidative stress levels. People with these conditions have higher markers of oxidant damage and lower cellular antioxidant levels than do healthy controls, and CoQ10 is typically lower than normal.45,47 In one study, 51.4% of depressed patients' CoQ10 levels fell below the lowest values in control subjects.

CoQ10 deficiency is particularly marked in people whose depression responds poorly to medication, a possible indication that the deficiency needs to be corrected in order for prescription meds to work.

A major breakthrough in our understanding of the causes of mental illness came in 2011 and 2012 when researchers discovered that oxidative and other related stresses in the brain were capable of creating new molecular configurations that triggered an autoimmune response in the brains of people with depression and schizophrenia.

Restoring natural levels of antioxidants such as CoQ10 is therefore an attractive approach in these conditions. One study of depression in older adults with bipolar disorder found a significant reduction in symptom severity during treatment with CoQ10 at 1,200 mg/day.51

The ubiquinol form of CoQ10 is far better absorbed, so a much lower dose, perhaps around 400 mg/day of ubiquinol should provide benefits seen when much higher doses of the more common ubiquinone form of CoQ10 is used.

Finally, some medications in common use against depression, such as amitryptiline, are capable of lowering CoQ10 levels in the blood, further reducing available energy in the brain. Thus, people taking such drugs are especially likely to benefit from CoQ10 supplementation.

CoQ10 Protects Lung Function

Your lungs face the most immediate threat of oxidant damage because they interact directly with the 21% oxygen in the air you breathe. It's not surprising, therefore, that the major diseases of the lung, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), involve a severe imbalance of oxidation and the body's natural preventive measures, including CoQ10.

Levels of CoQ10 are markedly lower in both asthmatics and patients with COPD. Conversely, supplementing with CoQ10 offers substantial benefits. In one study, asthmatic patients on chronic steroid treatment to reduce inflammation were able to significantly reduce the amount of steroids they had to give themselves each day. And a study of COPD patients showed improvements in exercise performance, tissue oxygenation, and heart rate on CoQ10 supplementation at 90 mg/day.

CoQ10 Fights Metabolic Syndrome and Diabetes

In both metabolic syndrome and diabetes, tissue levels of oxidant stress are markedly elevated. Not surprisingly, levels of the antioxidant CoQ10 are reduced in humans and lab animals with these conditions.

Low CoQ10 levels are now recognized as being closely correlated with problematic long-term blood sugar control and many of the complications of diabetes, including diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage), nephropathy (kidney damage), and of course endothelial dysfunction and the resulting cardiovascular damage.

Fortunately, supplementation with CoQ10 is a remarkably simple way to restore deficient levels and get better long-term control of blood sugar. Human studies show that adding CoQ10 to the already healthful Mediterranean diet further reduces oxidant stress and fat oxidation in the period immediately following a meal when your body is especially vulnerable to damage

This has beneficial effects on long-term blood sugar control. Supplementation with 200 mg/day of CoQ10 (in the ubiquinol form) reduced levels of hemoglobin A1c, a marker of blood sugar control over time, to less than 7%, the upper limit of normal. In both human and animal studies, the supplemented groups had significant decreases in elevated blood pressure and improvements in endothelial function.

Animal studies demonstrate improved nerve conduction velocity, a measure of nerve function, in diabetic animals supplemented with CoQ10. Human studies show improvement in endothelial function in diabetics taking 200 mg/day of CoQ10. CoQ10 supplements mitigate glucose and oxidant stress-induced damage to kidney tissue in diabetic animal models, restoring kidney function to near-normal levels.

New Developments in CoQ10 and Cardiovascular Health

It's not only people with metabolic syndrome and diabetes, however, who can benefit from CoQ10 supplementation with regard to cardiovascular disease. The heart and blood vessels are rich with mitochondria, and that requires highly effective and efficient use of energy in those tissues. That's what led the earliest researchers to study CoQ10 as a way of improving heart and blood vessel health.

In less than a decade, we've seen the emergence of remarkable new findings about CoQ10 and its cardiovascular benefits. Here are some highlights:

CoQ10 supplements improve the function of the heart's dominant left ventricle during the vital diastolic, or relaxation phase. This is critical because the diastolic phase is when the heart receives its own surge of blood flow, and statin drugs impair diastolic function.

Eight weeks of CoQ10 supplementation at 300 mg/day improved heart muscle function during the systolic, or pumping phase, by enhancing mitochondrial performance and endothelial function.

Eight weeks of CoQ10 supplementation at 300 mg/day improved heart muscle function during the systolic, or pumping phase, by enhancing mitochondrial performance and endothelial function.

The addition of CoQ10 to enalapril, a blood pressure drug, promoted the normalization of endothelial function and enhanced blood pressure control in patients with "essential hypertension."

The combination of CoQ10 with selenium, another important coenzyme with antioxidant powers, cut the death rate from cardiovascular disease by more than half (to 5.9% from 12.6%) in a group of older adults.

CoQ10 plus aged garlic extract, another supplement known to improve endothelial function and slow atherosclerosis, reduced blood vessel stiffness, and slowed arterial calcium accumulation in a group of firefighters.


The enzyme cofactor CoQ10 can help your mitochondria burn more cleanly and efficiently. That reduces the amount of oxidant stress and damage to mitochondria, helping to slow pathologic aging processes.

Reducing mitochondrial damage and enhancing performance with CoQ10 supplementation are well known to support cardiovascular function. Scientists are now discovering that CoQ10 contributes to a longer life, the result of the supplement's augmentation of mitochondrial function in brain structure and function, lung defense mechanisms, and disorders related to poor glycemic control and metabolic syndrome.

Total body health depends heavily on maintaining mitochondrial integrity. CoQ10 represents an efficient way to optimize mitochondrial output by maintaining coenzyme Q10 blood levels in youthful ranges.

Editor's Note

Science continues to evolve, and new research is published daily. As such, we have a more recent article on this topic: CoQ10 Continues to Impress Researchers


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