CO Q10 Boosts Energy, Nerves, Muscles & Metabolism-Winter Park
Coenzyme Q10 was the first anti-aging superstar nutrient, hitting the consumer market in the 1970s. The promise of Q10, to turn back the clock on aging cells, set the stage for many of the modern day anti-aging approaches based on nutritional science.
Over the years CO-Q10 has been put to extensive scientific testing for a variety of purposes. It has amassed 30 years of solid research in the field of cardiovascular health, and is supportive in such areas as blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides, arterial health, and heart health.
In more recent times CO-Q10 has demonstrated a significant ability to help nerves and muscles. New science shows that in addition to its antioxidant role, it also helps to stabilize the key gene signal underlying inflammation, NF-kappaB . Collectively, these benefits will assist overall metabolism, including weight loss efforts.
CO-Q10 is crucial for energy production. Within every cell are the cellular engines called mitochondria. Your nerves, muscles, heart, liver, and immune system all need large amounts of energy to perform their healthy function, and so have a lot of mitochondria.
Your cell engines combine fuel (calories) with oxygen, and then use various nutrients in a multi-step process to produce cellular energy, known as ATP. Many nutrients assist in this function, including B vitamins, krebs cycle cofactors, magnesium, lipoic acid, acetyl-l-carnitine, and CO-Q10.
Thus, CO-Q10 is part of your energy-producing team. It plays a very important role in the final steps of energy production and cannot be replaced, or compensated for, by any other nutrient. If you have an adequate amount you make energy at a more optimal rate. If you are lacking you simply cannot make energy at the optimal rate and instead will make free radicals in direct proportion to the lack of CO-Q10.
Since energy is fundamental to everything else, a lack of CO-Q10 contributes to the aging process in all systems in your body, especially internal cellular health and those body systems that rely heavily on energy production (heart, liver, brain, and muscles).
CO-Q10 itself can be synthesized in your body from the amino acid tyrosine. Its formation requires eight nutrients: tetrahydrobiopterin, vitamins B6, C, B2, B12, folic acid, niacin, and pantothenic acid. Plants contain no CO-Q10. Animal meats have CO-Q10 with the highest amounts being in red meat.
The need for CO-Q10 rises dramatically under the influence of stress. If you maintain a better state of natural balance, then you will need less CO-Q10. As your stress level rises Q10 is used up faster. If a deficiency persists then free radical production can accelerate, further aggravating the lack of CO-Q10. This is a nasty problem that is commonly being experienced by individuals with fatigue and a trend of worsening health.
Common CO-Q10 doses are in the 100 mg – 300 mg range for general health. More advanced health problems respond better to doses in the 600 mg – 1200 mg range. You are looking for a dose that noticeably boosts your energy, mood, and stress tolerance – a dose that will vary depending on how you are doing and how your life is going.
CO-Q10 as an Antioxidant. Antioxidants are your body’s natural defense system against free radicals. Your cells need a certain amount of antioxidants on hand simply to cope with the number of free radicals that are produced during normal energy production.
CO-Q10 is part of your antioxidant team. When it helps make energy more efficiently it helps reduce free radical production caused by inefficient energy production. Since CO-Q10 is fat soluble it is also known to accumulate in your cell membranes and protect that important fatty structures of your cells from free radical damage.
CO-Q10 also helps to recycle and recharge vitamin E and vitamin C so that they can continue working as antioxidants. It is very clear that antioxidants work best as a team, and CO-Q10 is a key player.
When antioxidants run low then free radical damage is increased, in turn speeding the aging process. CO-Q10 has gained notoriety as a potent anti-aging nutrient because it helps both energy production and antioxidant defenses in a significant way.
CO-Q10, Nerve Health, and Parkinson’s benefits. It is now extremely clear to the scientific community that mitochondrial problems are involved with almost all conditions of nerve-related deterioration. Since CO-Q10 is capable of helping to correct mitochondrial dysfunction, it is a key nutrient to help slow and possibly reverse age-associated changes in nerve health. CO-Q10 is being widely studied as a nerve-protecting nutrient in a variety of neurological problems.
A landmark study published back in 2002 proved that 1200 mg a day of CO-Q10 could slow the progression of Parkinson’s disease3. In this study doses of 300 mg, 600 mg and 1200 mg of Q10 were tested in on patients in the early stages of Parkinson’s over a 16 month period. The lower doses showed a trend towards improvement, but that trend only became statistically significant in the group taking 1200 mg per day. At this time there is no study showing that Q10 can changed more advanced stages of Parkinson’s.
Parkinson’s disease involves destruction of the dopamine producing cells primarily in the substantia nigra midbrain region. The fact that this disease primarily affects a particular region of the brain, as opposed to the brain in general, has focused research on differences in that brain region compared to others.
A neurotoxin called MPTP is known to induce Parkinson’s-like disease in humans, not affecting other areas of the brain. It works by specifically disrupting the function of CO-Q10 in the substantia nigra midbrain region, resulting in the loss of dopamine-producing nerve cells.
Just recently scientists proved for the first time that CO-Q10 levels are low in the substantia nigra brain region of Parkinson’s patients, proving a clear nutrient deficiency in the key brain region associated with Parkinson’s.
In addition to the energy boosting and anti-oxidant properties of CO-Q10, other research shows that CO-Q10 is able to modulate the key inflammatory gene switch, NF-kappaB, meaning that dopamine nerve cells will be more resistant to any kind of stress. The ability of CO-Q10 to modulate NF-kappaB all around your body is another angle on the anti-aging properties of CO-Q10, as inflammation is also a key theme of wear and tear and accelerated aging.
Q10 and Muscle Health. Muscles are big users of CO-Q10. A prolonged lack of CO-Q10 may contribute to or possibly be the cause of significantly impaired muscle function.
The ability to use your muscles and get a good energetic response in their performance is based in no small part on your mitochondria. In middle-age untrained men, 150 mg of CO-Q10 a day was shown to increase their sense of energetic vigor. A dose of 300 mg CO-Q10 a day was shown to increase the ability of healthy people to perform strenuous exercise before reaching fatigue. (100 mg was not enough to show a difference in this study). In a study with ten patients who had documented genetic CO-Q10/mitochondrial problems, 150 mg of CO-Q10 each day for six months produced clinically measurable remarkable improvement in brain and muscle function.
In serious issues of muscular dystrophies, 100 mg of CO-Q10 per day for three months produced clinically significant improvement in physical performance. The authors, in retrospect, believed the CO-Q10 dose should be higher and recommended indefinite treatment with CO-Q10 for any individual with any type of muscular dystrophy.
In patients with fibromyalgia, who have significant muscle aches and trouble exercising, their immune cells required for “house cleaning” have 40% less CO-Q10 in their cell membranes as did healthy people. A preliminary study showed self-reported improvement in fibromyalgia symptoms in 64% of patients taking 200 mg of CO-Q10 per day over a 12 week period.
In patients with chronic heart failure 300 mg of CO-Q10 per day was able to strengthen the heart over a 4 week period, as did exercise. CO-Q10 levels in the blood were elevated four times higher from the supplements, compared to the control group, and even higher when CO-Q10 was combined with exercise (meaning exercise helps condition the use of CO-Q10 – energy begets energy).
CO-Q10, Exercise, and Fat Burning. Due to its combination of increased energy production and improved antioxidant function, CO-Q10 is one of the best nutrients to take while on an exercise program. 200 mg a day of CO-Q10 has been shown to reduce free radical damage and boost time to exhaustion, and CO-Q10 levels during exercise directly related to oxygen utilization. Another human study showed that 90 mg of CO-Q10 boosted fat burning during exercise.
To really understand how CO-Q10 boosts fat burning during exercise it helps to understand a bit about the subject of uncoupling proteins. Mapping of the human genome has identified five primary metabolic uncoupling proteins (UCPs). A UCP disconnects normal cell-energy production and turns calories into one hundred percent heat. In essence, this is a method of completely disposing of calories – a great way to lose weight if you can do it in a healthy way.
A well-known example of this is the metabolism of brown adipose tissue, or BAT. This type of fat tissue is totally different from the white adipose tissue that stores extra fat. It has many nerves flowing into it, as well as a blood supply, thus giving it a brownish color and its name. It is the only tissue in the body that contains UCP1.
UCP allows this tissue to turn a calorie into one hundred percent heat. Normal cell energy production makes thirty-five percent heat and sixty-five percent energy in the form of ATP. Activation of BAT is naturally stimulated by an individual’s need to adapt to a colder temperature, and the hallmark of its activation is the shiver response.
BAT is also stimulated by nerves, especially adrenaline. Since the 1980s, nerve stimulation of BAT has been a favorite target of many weight-loss strategies that employ ephedra, caffeine, stimulant drugs, or some other type of nerve stimulant. The idea is that by stimulating BAT, extra fat calories will be melted away in the form of heat production.
We now know that this type of weight-loss strategy is risky and prone to relapse. There are serious cardiovascular and kidney side effects from this type of excess and ongoing nerve stimulation. Too much nerve stimulation to lose weight invariably results in yo-yo dieting once the stimulation is stopped.
However, a different uncoupling protein called UCP, which is found in your muscles, can also dispose of calories as heat. The great news is that it does this without any cardiovascular or kidney side effects or induction of the yo-yo response!
You can activate UCP by achieving better leptin control, by aerobic exercise, by increasing overall antioxidant status20 – and specifically by taking CO-Q10. Even walking 150 minutes a week can boost UCP activity in type II diabetic patients.
This gives you another great tool to help speed up the clearance of fat. Take some CO-Q10 and do some aerobic exercise, and you will tend to notice a better metabolic and fat burning response.
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