Could co-Q10 help you conceive?

Research shows this natural compound could aid conception and prevent pregnancy problems

When it comes time for a baby, the last thing we want is difficulty conceiving. But for many couples this is reality. Fortunately, there are options which could make the wish of having a baby come true, and one of them could be in the form of a natural substance known as co-Q10.

What is co-Q10?

Co-Q10 is a naturally occurring antioxidant and the source of our body’s natural energy supply. It plays a key role in the mitochondria, the part of a cell responsible for the production of energy.

Co-Q10, or co-enzyme Q10, is present in every cell in the body. However, research suggests adding to our body’s natural supplies of co-Q10, through food sources or a dietary supplement, could boost fertility and help with pregnancy. This is partly because we produce less co-Q10 as we get older.

Co-Q10 and female fertility

Researchers from the Toronto Centre for Advanced Reproductive Technology in Canada studied the possible impact co-Q10 could have on female fertility. Using 52-week-old mice – the equivalent of approximately 40-50-years-old for a human – scientists gave one group of mice co-Q10 and the other a placebo. Eggs retrieved from both groups were then compared with the eggs of 10-week-old mice. Scientists noticed mice given co-Q10 produced more eggs than the placebo group and the eggs had a better mitochondrial function.

Co-Q10 and male fertility

An Iranian study published in 2009 looked at the effects of co-Q10 on men with infertility problems. A total of 212 infertile men were randomly split into two groups: one was given 300mg of co-Q10 orally each day for 26-weeks while the other received a placebo.Upon completion of the trial, researchers conducted a semen analysis of each participant and found those in the co-Q10 group showed a significant improvement in both numbers of sperm and sperm motility.

Co-Q10 and pregnancy

Another benefit of co-Q10 is its antioxidant powers, which could help preserve cellular integrity and function. This could have a positive impact on healthy embryonic development.

Researchers have also discovered a link between levels of co-Q10 and the likelihood of miscarriage. A study conducted by the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the Catholic University in Rome looked at co-Q10 levels in 483 pregnant women and found a correlation between low co-Q10 levels and miscarriage. They also discovered a link between relatively high levels of co-Q10 and stronger uterine muscles, especially during the third trimester.

Co-Q10 is found in foods such as liver, oily fish, such as salmon and tuna, whole grains. If you’re having difficulty conceiving, talk to your doctor about including a co-Q10 supplement in your diet.

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