What Makes Your CoQ10 Levels Decline?
CoQ10 Levels Decline Naturally With Age
CoQ10 is endogenous to the human body – meaning that you produce it naturally and we all have it. However, our body’s natural ability to produce CoQ10 decreases as we age. From a peak at around age 21, the CoQ10 levels in most adults will drop over time, lowering by as much as sixty-five percent by the time we are 80.1
Unfortunately, the amount of CoQ10 we typically get from our regular dietary intake may not be enough to compensate for even our normal age-related decline in CoQ10 levels.
Other external factors, such as stress2 and a variety of medical conditions and drug interactions, may contribute to the accelerated depletion of your normal CoQ10 levels.
Cholesterol Lowering Medications – Statins – Can Reduce Your CoQ10 Levels
Statins, or by their proper name “HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors”, are the type of cholesterol management medications most often prescribed in the United States.
Research has shown that statins are helpful in reducing cardiovascular disease and mortality in those who are at risk. You probably know them better by their brand names, such as: Lipitor®, Pravachol®, Crestor®, Zocor®, etc. However, statins have an important unintended side effect, they may reduce your normal CoQ10 levels.3
Your body produces cholesterol in a pathway in your liver. It is within this same pathway that your body produces other essential compounds and chemicals including CoQ10. Because statins work by blocking the production of cholesterol in this pathway, they may also block the production of CoQ10.
This could potentially complicate other health issues and leave you vulnerable to side effects from your prescribed statins. Talk to your healthcare professional to learn more.
1 Fuke, C., Krikorian, S.A., Couris, R.R. Coenzyme Q10: a review of essential functions and clinical trials. US Pharmacist. 2000, 25(10), 28-41.
2 Navas, P., Villalba, J.M., de Cabo, R. The importance of plasma membrane coenzyme Q in aging and stress responses. Mitochondrion. 2007, 7S, S34-S40.
3 De Pinieux, G., et al. Lipid-lowering drugs and mitochondrial function: effects of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors on serum ubiquinone and blood lactate/pyruvate ratio. British J Clin Pharmacol. 19996, 42, 333-337.