Coenzyme Q10 plus selenium supplementation reduces cardiovascular deaths in long term trial
Tuesday, August 7, 2012. A four year trial of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and selenium has revealed a significant reduction in the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease among supplemented men and women. The study, which was reported in an article published online on May 22, 2012 in the International Journal of Cardiology, also uncovered a reduction in the cardiac biomarker N-terminal proBNP (NT-proBNP, a biomarker of cardiomyocyte wall tension), which is elevated in congestive heart failure and left ventricular dysfunction.
In a randomized, double-blinded trial, 228 Swedish citizens between the ages of 70 and 88 received a placebo or 200 micrograms selenium per day plus 100 milligrams CoQ10 twice daily for 48 months. NT-proBNP and echocardiographic changes were assessed at regular intervals. Over 5.2 years of follow-up (which included the four year treatment period), 5.9 percent of the supplemented group and 12.6 percent of the placebo group died of cardiovascular causes, which indicated a 54 percent adjusted risk reduction. When deaths from all causes were analyzed, a lower risk of mortality was observed among those who received CoQ10 and selenium compared to the placebo group; however, the difference was not considered significant. Those in the treatment group also had lower levels of NT-proBNP compared to placebo, and better cardiac function as determined by echocardiography.
Authors Urban Alehagen and colleagues remark that selenium is essential for the optimal activity of TrxR1, a protein necessary for the effectiveness of CoQ10, which, in turn, is active in several metabolic pathways in the heart. Thus, having insufficient levels of either nutrient increases the risk of cardiovascular events.
"Supplementation with selenium and coenzyme Q10 resulted in a significant reduction of cardiovascular mortality in a cohort of Swedish elderly persons," the authors conclude. "We suggest that the results of this study can provide a basis for extended analyses of the effects of selenium/coenzyme Q10 on various conditions, and that further supplementation studies in larger populations involving diverse age groups should be initiated."
Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Atlanta analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) of 1988-1994, 1999-2004 and 2005-2010 for their research, which included a total of 44,959 participants. Survey responses and physical examinations provided information on the following cardiovascular health metrics: smoking status, physical activity level, body mass index, healthy diet intake, total serum cholesterol, blood pressure and fasting blood glucose. Mortality data obtained through 2006 ascertained 2,673 deaths, including 1,085 deaths from cardiovascular disease and 576 ischemic heart disease deaths over a median follow-up period of 14.5 years.
Subjects were scored on optimal status for each of the seven health metrics, i.e., not smoking, being physically active and having healthy body mass index, diet, serum cholesterol, blood pressure and hemoglobin A1C (indicating desirable glucose levels). Less than 2 percent of all participants met all seven goals. Having two or more optimal factors was associated with a 27 percent lower adjusted risk of dying of cardiovascular disease compared to one or no factors, and this risk continued to decline in association with an increasing number of factors to reach a 76 percent reduction with the presence of six or more factors. Additionally, having six or more factors was associated with a 51 percent lower risk of dying of any cause.
"Our findings indicate that the presence of a greater number of cardiovascular health metrics was associated with a graded and significantly lower risk of total and cardiovascular disease mortality," the authors conclude.
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This supplement should be taken in conjunction with a healthy diet and regular exercise program. Individual results are not guaranteed and results may vary.
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