If you're looking for a supplement that may help protect your heart while lowering "bad" cholesterol levels, you should consider trying coenzyme Q10 (coQ10). This substance is naturally produced by the human body and is necessary for the basic functioning of cells, according to The Mayo Clinic. However, as you age, coQ10 levels may decrease. Also, certain diseases such as heart conditions, muscular dystrophies, Parkinson's disease, cancer and diabetes may deplete your coQ10 levels, which is why taking supplements of this natural substance is important.
What can coQ10 do for you? According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, coQ10 is a powerful antioxidant. You've probably heard of these substances often in the past few years, but many people do not know exactly how they can benefit the body.
"Antioxidants fight damaging particles in the body known as free radicals, which damage cell membranes, tamper with DNA, and even cause cell death. Scientists believe free radicals contribute to the aging process, as well as a number of health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Antioxidants, such as CoQ10, [may] neutralize free radicals and may reduce or even help prevent some of the damage they cause," according to the UMMC.
Beyond that, research has shown that coQ10 may benefit the heart. For example, one clinical study found that people who took coQ10 supplements within 3 days of a heart attack were less likely to experience another cardiovascular event or chest pain. Of course, you should ask your doctor before taking any supplements following a heart attack.
CoQ10 is also being investigated as a product that may help lower cholesterol. Along with niacin, coQ10 is another natural substance that studies have shown may help reduce "bad" cholesterol levels.
Furthermore, there's evidence that people who have congestive heart failure may have low levels of coQ10. Studies have shown that coQ10 supplements may help reduce swelling of the joints, make breathing easier and increase exercise capability in people with heart failure.
The potential benefits of coQ10 don't stop at the heart, either. The Mayo Clinic states that there is promising evidence that coQ10 may help slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease and improve migraine symptoms.
So whether you're looking to improve heart health, or simply increase your overall well-being, coQ10 supplements may be able to help.