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Coenzyme Q10 and Aging

vector futuristic face with coq10 molecule next to itCoenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an antioxidant that naturally occurs in the body and plays a crucial role in producing energy for cells. In addition to its energy-producing function, CoQ10 has also been found to have anti-aging properties, including the reduction of signs of skin aging.
As we age, the levels of CoQ10 in our body decrease, which can lead to the breakdown of collagen and elastin in the skin. These proteins are responsible for maintaining the skin's elasticity, and their breakdown can lead to wrinkles and sagging skin. By supplementing with CoQ10, the body is provided with the necessary antioxidant protection to combat free radicals that can cause skin damage, and produce a healthy inflammatory response that stimulates an increase in collagen production.
Another way that CoQ10 may help with anti-aging is by supporting mitochondrial function. Mitochondria are the powerhouses of the cell, responsible for generating energy in the form of ATP. As we age, the function of mitochondria declines, which can lead to a decrease in energy production and an increase in oxidative stress. CoQ10 plays an essential role in the electron transport chain, which is the final step in ATP production within mitochondria. By supporting this process, CoQ10 may help improve mitochondrial function, thereby promoting youthful energy levels and reducing the effects of aging on the body.
Studies have shown that topical application of CoQ10 can improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, reduce sun damage, and improve skin elasticity. Additionally, oral supplementation of CoQ10 has been found to improve skin hydration, texture, and overall appearance.
One interesting double-blind, placebo-controlled study involving 33 healthy participants aimed to examine the impact of daily supplementation with 50 and 150 mg of CoQ10  for 12 weeks on skin parameters and conditions. Although previous in vitro research indicated that CoQ10 could offer some protection against UVB exposure, the amount of UV radiation needed to cause a minor reddening of the skin did not change significantly between the participants who took CoQ10 supplements and those who took a placebo. However, the intake of CoQ10 helped to prevent seasonal degradation of viscoelasticity, the ability of the skin to maintain its elasticity and bounce back to its original shape after being stretched, and reduce some visible signs of aging, such as wrinkles and microrelief lines, while improving skin smoothness.
Take home message - CoQ10's ability to protect against free radicals, produce a healthy inflammatory response, increase collagen production, and help with wrinkles makes it a powerful ingredient in reducing the signs of skin aging and having vibrant youthful energy levels.
In Good Health,
James O'Keefe, MD