PQQ-Co-Q10 Part 2: Co-enzyme Q10 a Therapeutic or Ergogenic aid? Contextual Caution Advised!

PQQ-Co-Q10 Part 2: Co-enzyme Q10 a Therapeutic or Ergogenic aid? Contextual Caution Advised!

Oh hey folks! It’s good to be back. It’s been nearly ten days since you heard from us, and we’ve now given up: Apparently getting lost in the bowels of Bangkok city, Kayaking to the wrong island in Krabi, and getting food poisoning at a cliff side Railay bungalow was not sufficient to fake our own deaths, because nobody noticed. Maybe we’ll wait until we have more Twitter followers to try that again.

On which note, a massive THANK YOU to everyone who’s helped us land in the overall iTunes New&Noteworthy section! $0 on marketing/advertising plus a week taken off, yet we’ve moonwalked into the top lists thanks to all of the amazing listeners who have left reviews. We massively appreciate everyone subscribing, there is a TON of exciting new content on the way this week!

As a way of easing back into things, we’re polishing off our PQQ+CoQ10 supplementation analysis: Does the cost justify the hype? Can digestive supplementation improve your exercise performance by reducing oxidative stress? We could spend a month’s worth of posts on this area the time it’d take you to burn 100 quid on these supplements reviewing the literature on oxidative stress (in short: lots of stuff on both sides!), delivery mechanisms for supplementation, cost of ergogenic aids vs focusing costs into better lifestyle management, or a dozen other directions. Instead, we’ll just let you know why PQQ+CoQ10 supplementation isn’t worth it right now.

Co-enzyme Q10 is one of the flavor of the month supplements being sold to improve aerobic capacity and subsequent endurance performance by increasing mitochondrial biogenesis (creation of new mitochondria), has often been paired up with PQQ supplementation. However, the scientific basis for Co-Q10 involves its therapeutic mechanisms in those of us with deficiency in its bioavailability or biosynthesis (Potgieter et al, 2011) with cardiovascular disease and degenerative muscle disorders well studied in humans (Dallner & Sindelar, 2000; Turunen et al, 2004; Fernandez et al, 2005). Do you have cardiovascular disease or a degenerative muscle disorder? No? Then you don’t need this supplement.

 Co-Q10 is a lipid soluble antioxidant with redox cycling and de novo re-synthesis…you know what? Let us simply leave you with the 2010 review by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA, 2010) Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition, and Allergies – which addressed all health claims of Co-Q10: among others, “energy production,” “muscle function, and “Stimulating ATP in the cellular energetic processes. EFSA concluded that a cause-and-effect relationship could not be established between the consumption of CoQ10 and contribution to normal energy-yielding metabolism. Although a small number of subjects in one study showed some changes in muscle energy metabolism in response to CoQ10 supplementation, the relevance of these results to the claimed effect was thought to be unclear.

Once again, at the end of the day: Your money would be better spent finding a way to work harder, be more efficient, and make smarter nutrition and lifestyle choices! Nail the bottom of the pyramid first, then look to supplementation, maybe.

If you have used or are using or considering using Co-Q10 and have noticed any real difference to your performance, get in touch on Twitter, Facebook or email: info@welltraveledwellness.com as we’d love to hear from you!


Dallner G, Sindelar PJ. Regulation of ubiquinone metabolism. Free Radic Biol Med. 2000;29:285-294.

Turunen M, Olsen J, Dallner G. Metabolism and function of coenzyme Q. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2004;1660:171-199.

Fernandez-Ayala DJM, Lapez-Lluch G, Garca-Valds M, et al. Specificity of coen- zyme Q10 for a balanced function of respiratory chain and endogenous ubiquinone biosynthesis in human cells. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005;1706: 174-183.

EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA). Scientific opinion on the substantiation of health claims related to coenzyme Q10 and contribu- tion to normal energy-yielding metabolism, maintenance of normal blood pres- sure, protection of DNA, proteins and lipids from oxidative damage, contribution to normal cognitive function, maintenance of normal blood cholesterol concen- trations and increase in endurance capacity and/or endurance performance pur- suant to Article 13(1) of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006. EFSA J. 2010;8:1793.

Potgieter, M., Pretorius, E., Pepper, M.S. (2011). Primary and secondary coenzyme Q10 deficiency: the role of therapeutic supplementation. Nutrition Reviews, Vol. 71(3), pp.180-188.