Is it true that anyone over 40 does not benefit from taking CO-Q10 capsules?

1 answer | Last updated: Oct 08, 2016
Stormn2 asked...

According to Dr. Oz, anyone over 40 gets no benefit from taking a CO-Q10 capsule. Is that true? What alternative is there to getting the necessary amount of antioxidants?


Expert Answers

Beth Reardon, M.S., R.D., L.D.N., is Caring.com senior food and nutrition editor and the director of integrative nutrition at Duke Integrative Medicine. As a practitioner of integrative nutrition, Reardon takes a holistic approach to wellness, recognizing that the foundation for optimal health and healing begins with a health-promoting diet. As a practitioner of integrative nutrition, Reardon takes a holistic approach to wellness, recognizing that the foundation for optimal health and healing begins with a health-promoting diet.

Co Q 10 is a vital anti-oxidant that is made by our body and used by all cells, but preferentially by heart, immune and muscle cells for energy metabolism. Much of human metabolism is dependent upon the use of oxygen and the subsequent creation of free radicals. CoQ10 is important on both ends of this equation; the production of energy from food and the protection of our cell membranes from the free radicals that are the byproducts of this metabolism. Levels begin to decline after the age of 35 so I would actually be comfortable recommending at least a 60 mg/day supplement at that point. The exception would be if someone younger were prescribed a statin medication. I would then start them on 100 "“ 200 mg day. Statin medications work by inhibiting the activity of the enzyme responsible for cholesterol as well as CoQ10 production.
So there is no stand in for the role of CoQ10 in terms of its role in energy metabolism throughout the body. Our body has an absolute need for it. Anti-oxidants however are also essential for health; slowing the aging process, decreasing our risk of chronic illness and levels of inflammation. They can be found in abundance through the use of a plant based diet. Remember to eat across the color spectrum to assure you are getting a wide selection of these powerful plant compounds. At the same time eat to reduce your exposure to oxidative stress and free radical damage. Choose plant proteins and seafood over animal protein. Limit your intake of trans and hydrogenated fats in all forms as well as processed foods containing wheat flour and excessive sugar. Drink plenty white and green tea along with water for the anti-oxidant protection and to support overall metabolism. I hope this clarifies a very important question!