Can Higher Doses of CoQ10 Protect You From This Devastating Disease?
We’ve long known that CoenzymeQ10, also known as CoQ10, is critical for heart health, but here’s an exciting new reason to consider taking it: CoQ10 may actually help protect your brain from Alzheimer’s.
The potent antioxidant attenuates the type brain damage that leads to Alzheimer’s disease, say researchers at Hanyang University College of Medicine, who tested CoQ10 on animals with Alzheimer’s-type brain damage.
The study team set out to evaluate the neuroprotective effects of CoQ10 against beta-amyloid plaque-induced neurotoxicity. To perform their test, the researchers worked with primary cultured cortical neurons that were treated with several concentrations of CoQ10 and/or beta-amyloid for 48 hours.
They concluded that CoQ10 protected neuronal cells against beta-amyloid-induced neurotoxicity in a concentration-dependent manner. But, more interestingly, they found that CoQ10 elevated levels of proteins associated with neuronal cell survival, such as heat shock transcription factor and phosphorylated GSK-3β, while decreasing the levels of proteins related to neuronal cell death, such as cytosolic cytochrome-c and cleaved caspase-3.
The researchers determined that these protective effects are mediated by inhibition of oxidative stress together with activation of the PI3-K/Akt pathway, an intracellular signalling pathway important in apoptosis.
But, according to another study, this isn’t the only mechanism in play when CoQ10 is boosting brain health. It is thought that low levels of CoQ10 may promote a mitochondrial dysfunction that causes proteins to fold inappropriately, contributing to the formation of beta-amyloid plaques.
This news is especially troubling when one considers the massive number of statin prescriptions that are written each year, as statin drugs dramatically reduce our body’s ability to generate CoQ10. Additionally, our cells naturally produce less CoQ10 as we age, compromising the health of the two organs it’s most concentrated in: our hearts and our brains.
How Much CoQ10 Should You Take?
To optimize the protective properties of CoQ10 in the brain, experts recommend taking anywhere from 200-400 mg per day. If you are on a cholesterol-lowering medication, or over the age of 65, you should consider taking at least 300 mg to protect the brain from free radical damage and plaque formation. Here are a few other guidelines to help you decide the best dose for you.
|Health Concern or Objective||CoQ10 mg/day|
|Statin drug use||200-300 mg/day depending on statin dosing|
|Improved athletic performance||60 mg/day|
|Reduce fatigue||50-150 mg/day|
|Migraine headache sufferers||100-150 mg/day|
|Congestive heart failure||50 to 300 mg/day|
|High blood pressure||50 to 150 mg/day|
|Post heart attack||120-200 mg/day|
|Huntington’s disease||600 mg/day|
|Parkinson’s disease||500-1200 mg/day|