CoQ10 is among the most popular dietary supplements in the U.S. with $450 million sold in 2009, according to Nutrition Business Journal. The recent Supplement Users Survey by ConsumerLab.com showed that 53% of serious supplement users purchased CoQ10 in 2010 and this rate was even higher among men and people over the age of 55.
Across 31 products reviewed by ConsumerLab.com, the suggested daily serving size ranged from only 22 mg to 400 mg of CoQ10 or ubiquinol. The cost to obtain 100 mg of either ingredient from the products ranged from just 11 cents to more than $3. Some products contained “solubilized” forms of CoQ10 or ubiquinol, which may deliver more than twice as much CoQ10 into the blood as standard capsules.
ConsumerLab.com’s supplement testing showed that all products contained their listed amounts of CoQ10 or ubiquinol, but four products violated FDA labeling requirements by depicting a heart symbol on their labels. The heart symbol is an implied health claim not permitted by FDA for CoQ10 or ubiquinol supplements.
CoQ10 may help treat congestive heart failure and mitochondrial encephalomyopathies. There is some evidence, although mixed, that it may also help prevent migraine headaches, delay the progression of Parkinson's disease and reverse side effects associated with cholesterol-lowering statin drugs. Research suggests potential use in muscular dystrophy, AIDS, hypertension and other conditions. A study of ubiquinol in elderly people suggested an improvement in self-assessed “vitality.”
Tod Cooperman, MD, president of ConsumerLab.com, cautioned, “Due to the wide range of dosage indicated on CoQ10 and ubiquinol supplement labels, anyone seeking to use these products should first determine the appropriate dosage for the intended use and then select a product that most conveniently and economically provides that dosage.”