For most of us, a headache is just a nuisance. Yes, it hurts… and, yes, we’d like it to stop… but it doesn’t bring our entire lives to a screeching halt. A cup of white willow bark tea, a little rest, and we’re back in action.
But for some of my patients – and 30 million other Americans – there’s no such thing as “just a headache.” The throbbing pain they suffer – sometimes several times a month – can keep them from functioning beyond the most basic level.
Sometimes sounds – and even light – can be unbearable for these sufferers. As if that weren’t bad enough, the pain can continue for days at a time.
That’s why I’m so glad to be able to tell my patients – and you – about research that’s unfolding even as I write this. Research that could finally bring you some relief when other avenues have failed.
The Energizer That Crushes Pain
You’ve probably heard of CoQ10 before. Studies have shown it helps protect your heart and blood vessels and that it may support normalization of nerve function1 But it’s not an herb – or even a vitamin.
CoQ10 is a coenzyme. It’s called a coenzyme because it doesn’t, itself, make reactions happen… but it enables enzymes to do their job.
Your body can actually make some CoQ10. And it’s a good thing. Without CoQ10, your body couldn’t produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the fuel it uses on the cellular level.
But recent research has shown that CoQ10 may do much more. In several studies, it’s proven effective against the worst chronic headaches. And there appears to be a good reason why.
Is CoQ10 the “Missing Link” of Headaches?
In 2007, researchers looked at a group of children and teens who suffered from frequent, severe headaches. They measured their CoQ10 levels and found that a third of them had very low levels of CoQ10. When they gave these subjects supplemental CoQ10, every single one of them reported fewer and less severe headaches.2
And children aren’t the only ones who benefit. In two separate studies, adults also had similar results.
In Zurich, Swiss doctors tested 42 patients. Half were given CoQ10, while the other half received a placebo. The placebo group reported a modest 14% improvement. But the CoQ10 group had an improvement rate of 47.6%.3
Researchers at Thomas Jefferson Hospital had even better results. When they gave CoQ10 to chronic headache sufferers, they experienced 55.3% fewer headaches after just 3 months.4
These results are more than encouraging. If further trials link low CoQ10 levels to chronic headache, it will be a major breakthrough.
Meanwhile, if you suffer from frequent, severe headaches…
Here’s How to Get Some Relief
In the two adult studies I mentioned, researchers used daily doses of 300 mg and 150 mg of CoQ10. Interestingly, the study using the smaller dose had somewhat better results.
Because CoQ10 is well tolerated and safe, there’s no reason most people can’t take 200 mg per day. That’s in the ballpark of what provided the most relief.
The one exception is if you take blood thinners. If you do, talk to your doctor before you take supplemental CoQ10.
But for everyone else, CoQ10 could help provide real relief. And with its many other benefits, you may want to include it with your daily supplements anyway.
Dr. Kenneth Woliner, M.D.
Best Life Herbals
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