Coenzyme Q10 safety has been a topic of discussion for a long time, since the dietary supplement does not come in the list of FDA approved drugs. To know more about Coenzyme Q10 and its effects, read on…
Coenzyme Q10 is a naturally occurring compound in our body. It is concentrated in the mitochondria, part of the cell and is involved in the synthesis of energy. Individual cells derive energy from ATP molecule and CoQ10 plays a critical role in the production of this energy source of the cell. The bodily functions bank on ATP molecule for their energy needs. Be it muscle contraction or stimulating enzymes to promote digestion, presence of CoQ10 is very important to carry out these body processes in a better way.
Studies suggest that Coenzyme Q10 supplements might be useful in the treatment of migraine, cardiovascular ailments such as congestive heart failure (CHF), Parkinson’s disease and dental issues like periodontal disease. As its main function is to generate energy, people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome may also benefit from usage of CoQ10 supplements. It is believed that Coenzyme Q10 is also beneficial to healthy individuals as it supports heart health and may help to prevent cardiovascular problems in the long run. However, is Coenzyme Q10 safe and can it be a replacement for prescription medicines. It is discussed below:
Is Coenzyme Q10 Safe?
Dietary supplements or prescription medicines are never free from side effects and Coenzyme Q10 is no exception to it. CoQ10 does trigger unwanted secondary side effects but they are not a cause of concern. Most of them are not serious and last only for a short life. Side effects like nausea, diarrhea and fatigue might not last long once the body gets used it. However, patients have also complained about bothersome side effects like decrease in appetite. Well, this may be good news for those who wish to lose their extra pounds but underweight patients will be at loss if their appetite decreases. Appetite loss or reduction is certainly unacceptable side effect for people who are already underweight. A stomach upset is yet another possibility from taking Coenzyme Q10 supplements. A person affected with stomach upset typically experiences heartburn and stomach ache. However, this side effect is not frequently reported by patients.
Is Coenzyme Q10 Safe During Pregnancy?
Considering suggested Coenzyme Q10 benefitS, can pregnant women take CoQ10 supplements? Adequate research is yet to determine safety of these supplement during pregnancy. Coenzyme Q10 safety has not been evaluated during pregnancy. Although small studies have been conducted, results are not conclusive and further investigations are warranted. It is not known whether CoQ10 taken in supplemental form would cause any harm to the developing baby. Under these circumstances, it is recommended to avoid intake of these supplements. Breastfeeding mothers should also stay away from these supplements as research has not been done that confirms CoQ10 does not produce any side effects during nursing the infant.
Coenzyme Q10 Drug Interactions
Drug interaction is yet another issue associated with CoQ10. This dietary supplement helps in lowering blood pressure. So, hypertension patients taking prescription medicines need to think twice before using this dietary supplement. Taking both these medicines can cause a drop in blood pressure to alarmingly low levels. This may lead to dizziness, blurred vision and fainting. Adding Coenzyme Q10 supplements to the diet can also reduce the efficacy of chemotherapy drugs and anticoagulants like warfarin.
Another matter of concern regarding use of CoQ10 is its impact on blood sugar. There is a possibility of dip in blood sugar levels with intake of CoQ10 supplements. A drop in blood sugar is a cause of concern, especially in people suffering from hypoglycemia, a condition in which sugar in blood is abnormally low. So, a migraine patient suffering from hypoglycemia and taking CoQ10 supplement to get relief from headache may actually have to deal with severe forms of hypoglycemia. In such a case, if urgent treatment is not taken, it can be life-threatening. Considering that CoQ10 disturbs blood sugar levels, many people question its safety regarding its usage in diabetic patients. Although it does help to decrease blood sugar, diabetics put on prescribed medicines should really think twice before using it. CoQ10 causes a sudden fall in blood sugar levels, which might not be tolerated by diabetic patients. On the whole, diabetics who feel that CoQ10 might help them in controlling blood sugar should first contact a doctor.
Before any drug is made accessible to the public, it has to be approved by the FDA. A FDA approved drug is safe and is unlikely to produce adverse side effects when taken in the correct dosage. However, Coenzyme Q10 supplements have not received FDA approval for the treatment of various medical ailments. Also, the methods that are being used to prepare this compound synthetically have also not been scrutinized for safety and efficacy. So, Coenzyme Q10 should not be replaced with prescription medicines. It is observed that a number a pharmaceutical companies are selling these Coenzyme Q10 supplements. There have been cases, wherein supplements that were being heavily promoted actually contained undesirable ingredients. Hence, one must first consult a doctor to know about the reliable brand that could serve the purpose.
Considering the fact that Coenzyme Q10 hasn’t got the nod from FDA, talking to a doctor should be your first priority when it comes to using CoQ10 therapy. So, make sure you use this dietary supplement under medical supervision.