What do we hear about diabetes? It is a silent disease. Its symptoms are often silent until it is too late. None of us wants to get type-2 diabetes.
However, if it should happen, the main thing to know about Coenzyme Q10 supplementation and diabetes is that Coenzyme Q10 supplements are safe for diabetics to take. Of course, diabetics should inform their physicians that they are planning to take a daily Coenzyme Q10 supplement of 100 or 200 milligrams, but there are research results to document that doing so is safe.
Until recently, we have not seen much research done concerning the effects of Coenzyme Q10 supplementation on metabolic syndrome. Now, a start has been made. The preliminary results show that Coenzyme Q10 supplementation has beneficial effects on serum insulin concentrations, glucose homeostasis parameters, and bio-markers of oxidative stress in patients diagnosed with metabolic syndrome [Raygan].
Dr. Raygan and colleagues have reported in the European Journal of Nutrition that daily supplementation with 100 milligrams of Coenzyme Q10 for eight weeks resulted in the following significantly improved health outcomes for overweight or obese patients aged 45-80 years who had been diagnosed with diabetes and coronary heart disease:
Twelve weeks of supplementation with Coenzyme Q10 can significantly reduce the levels of oxidative stress associated with diabetes.
Recently, Swedish researchers reported the results of a study of the effects of daily Coenzyme Q10 supplementation on type-1 and type-2 diabetes patients. Twice a day for a period of 12 weeks, the 22 diabetes patients in the study received 100 milligrams of oral Coenzyme Q10 in the form of ubiquinone.
The patients averaged 57 years of age (type-1 diabetes patients) and 63 years of age (type-2 diabetes patients). They were predominantly male patients [Montano].
A 2016 systematic review and meta-analysis of the evidence from randomized controlled trials has shown that daily supplementation with Coenzyme Q10 slightly but significantly reduced fasting blood sugar levels. Another good thing: Coenzyme Q10 supplementation did not significantly affect fasting insulin levels or Hb1Ac levels.
In other words, pre-diabetics and diabetics can safely take Coenzyme Q10 supplements to gain these known heart health benefits:
Improvement of the ATP energy production in the heart muscle cells [Mortensen]
Protection of the heart muscle cells against oxidative damage [Alehagen]
Improvement of endothelial function in the heart and blood vessels [Littarru]
Reduction of high blood pressure [Rosenfeldt]
Good Coenzyme Q10 news for pre-diabetics and diabetics
Yes, pre-diabetics and diabetics will want to talk with their physicians about the meta-analysis conducted by Dr. Moradi and his colleagues. Pre-diabetics and diabetics can benefit from taking daily Coenzyme Q10 supplements in the same way that participants receiving the active Coenzyme Q10 treatment in the following studies have benefited as compared to participants in the placebo control groups:
Recently, I read a published review of the research literature about the nutritional and therapeutic supplement Coenzyme Q10. It was very interesting to see what the research has revealed and to see what the authors of the review chose to emphasize [Potgieter].
Coenzyme Q10 supplements confer the following known health benefits:
improve the symptoms and survival of heart failure patients
provide antioxidant protection to patients taking statin medications
help to lower high blood pressure
maintain good heart function in middle-aged and elderly people
provide heart health benefits to people with diabetes
Normal unsupplemented levels of plasma Coenzyme Q10
First off, there is wide variation in the plasma Coenzyme Q10 concentrations of individuals who are not taking Coenzyme Q10 supplements. There are many factors that influence any one individual’s Coenzyme Q10 status:
How does Coenzyme Q10 supplementation keep the heart young and healthy? The primary explanation is that Coenzyme Q10 is absolutely vital to the cellular process of producing energy, and the heart muscle needs energy constantly. An energy-starved heart is a failing heart.
A second and also important explanation is that oxidative damage causes the heart muscle cells to age and deteriorate. Coenzyme Q10 has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that can help to prevent the development of atherosclerosis.
What is the effect of Coenzyme Q10 supplementation on the functioning of the immune system? We know that randomized controlled trials of Coenzyme Q10 supplementation have shown the beneficial role of Coenzyme Q10 in the prevention and adjuvant treatment of chronic heart failure and ischemic heart disease. We know that Coenzyme Q10 supplementation has been shown to be especially important for patients on statin medications and for middle-aged and elderly healthy individuals whose bodies no longer produce as much Coenzyme Q10 as in earlier years. What about Coenzyme Q10 supplements for patients whose immune system is weak?