From Dr. Jill Smith
Coenzyme Q10, also known as Ubiquinol, is a fat-soluble vitamin like substance found in nearly every cell in the human body. Its fundamental role is that it moves electrons during reduction and oxidative cellular functions. Dietary sources of CoQ10 include organ meats, sardines and spinach (WebMD). This coenzyme enables life-sustaining chemical reactions in the body, including its integral role in liberating energy from food, neutralizing damaging free radicals and regenerating protective antioxidants. Although our body is able to manufacture its own CoQ10, after the age of 20 our ability to do so declines over time and is very depleted by the age of 40. In addition to this age-related decline, there are other factors that deplete the amount of Coenzyme Q10 found in the body. One is common Statin drugs such as Lipitor. Other factors such as unhealthy diets, environmental toxins and stress can also diminish CoQ10 levels. To restore healthy youthful levels of Coenzyme Q10, dietary supplements or focused increase of foods containing this nutrient are required.
Research suggests that the far-reaching benefits of the supplement CoQ10 (Ubiquinol) have positive effects on oral health as well the whole body (Mayo Clinic). I first heard about CoQ10 through a patient of mine who worked in a health food store. He mentioned anecdotally that many of his clients that were taking Coenzyme Q10 were reporting an improvement in their gingivitis and gum tissue health and a lessening of gum disease and other inflammatory issues in their body. He also shared a great resource with me, a booklet from People’s Health Series titled “Coenzyme Q 10 and Its Active Form: Ubiquinol.” Since my practice focuses on dental health and whole body wellness, I want to share with you information and the science behind the supplement CoQ10 and Ubiquinol.
The role of Coenzyme Q10 in oral health is related to its properties in controlling inflammation. Periodontal disease is an inflammatory disease where the body’s reaction to bacterial toxins in the mouth mediates an inflammatory response resulting in the destruction of the gum and bone around the teeth. As far back as 1981, researchers had established the benefits of CoQ10 as an effective imunomodulating agent and neutralizer of inflammatory pathogens. Another study investigating the link between a deficiency of Coenzyme Q10 and periodontal disease found convincing results about 60% of the 40% diseased gingival tissues showed a deficiency of CoQ10. Another study was conducted where CoQ10 was applied to pockets of disease gum tissue and significantly reduced the pocket depths and bleeding as well as other indicators of infection.
The benefits of Ubiquinol and CoenzymeQ10 reach farther than the mouth. CoQ10 has been shown clinically to promote and maintain a healthy heart, support the cardiovascular system and promote arterial and vascular health. CoQ10 may promote improved cognitive function and nervous system health. CoQ10 plays a vital role in ATP production and is required for energy production in the cell, which in turn supports healthy aging. CoQ10’s close relationship with cellular health may promote many more health benefits. It has been clinically tested for its impact on tinnitus (ringing ears), diabetes, migraine headaches, gum disease, exercise performance, immune disorders, asthma and neurodegenerative problems.
I am excited about the potential to help my patients with gingivitis and gum disease with dietary supplements and dietary awareness of foods that contain CoQ10.