What is Coenzyme Q10?
Coenzyme Q10 – also known as Co Q10 – is a substance that’s present in virtually all of our cells. It is not classed as a vitamin, because our body can make its own, but it works like one - participating in chemical reactions inside our cells. Most of our Co Q10 is found in the mitochondria of our cells: the energy-producing factories. It helps to produce a substance called ATP, which our cells use as an energy source.
Where can I get Co Q10?
As well as the Co Q10 that our body makes, we can get small amounts from foods – mainly meat and fish. However, the levels in foods are tiny compared to what we should be producing in our own body, and cannot fulfil our body’s needs in a situation where we’re not making enough of our own Co Q10. For this reason, some people choose to take a coenzyme Q10 supplement if they need extra support, as supplements can provide more effective levels than foods.
How do I choose a Co Q10 supplement?
Coenzyme Q10 usually comes as capsules or tablets, with a few options available in liquid form. Because Co Q10 is fat-soluble, it may be better absorbed in an oil base in a softgel capsule or a liquid, compared to a dry tablet form. Some capsules or liquids provide coenzyme Q10 in an emulsified oil base, which may be even better for absorption. In addition to the physical form (capsule, tablet etc.) you can also find a choice of two different types of Co Q10. The standard type found in most supplements is ubiquinone. The other type is ubiquinol. In chemical terms, ubiquinol is the ‘reduced’ form of Co Q10, meaning carries electrons that it can donate to other molecules; it is ready to work in our body. Ubiquinone is the ‘oxidised’ form, meaning it has to be converted by our body back to the ubiquinol form before it can work. For this reason, ubiquinol may be a more effective form of coenzyme Q10.Dosages of both standard Co Q10 and ubiquinol typically range from 30 mg to 200 mg. You might choose 30 mg Co Q10 for gentle support or for maintenance purposes, but take up to 100 or 200mg for more intensive support. If you would like help choosing a coenzyme Q10 supplement, or if you are taking any prescribed medication, give our nutritionists a call on 0345 2222 828 (option 3)