We know: All About Coenzyme Q-10

What is coenzyme Q-10?

Coenzyme -10 is a compound that is made naturally in the body and is used by cells to produce energy needed for cell growth and maintenance. It is also used by the body as an antioxidant.

Why do researchers think coenzyme Q-10 is valuable?

Studies have yielded information about how coenzyme Q-10 works in the body to produce energy and act as an antioxidant. Some studies have suggested that coenzyme -10 stimulates the immune system and increases resistance to disease.

In part because of this, researchers have theorized that coenzyme -10 may be useful as an adjuvant therapy for cancer.

How do you take coenzyme Q-10?

Coenzyme Q-0 is usually taken by mouth as a pill (tablet or capsule). It may also be given by injection into a vein.

Where is coenzyme Q-10 available?

Several companies distribute coenzyme Q-10 as a dietary supplement.

In the United States, dietary supplements are regulated as foods, not drugs. This means that evaluation and approval by the FDA are not required before marketing, unless specific health claims are made about the supplement.

It should be noted that, because dietary supplements are not formally reviewed for manufacturing consistency, there may be variation in the composition of the supplement from one batch to another.

Have any side effects or risks been reported from coenzyme Q-10?

No serious side effects have been reported from the use of coenzyme Q-10. Some patients using coenzyme Q-10 have experienced mild insomnia, elevated levels of liver enzymes, rashes, nausea, and upper abdominal pain. Other reported side effects have included dizziness, visual sensitivity to light, irritability, headache, heartburn, and fatigue.

Patients should talk with their health care provider about possible interactions between coenzyme Q-10 and prescription drugs they may be taking.

The National Cancer Institute provided help in preparing this article.

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