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Home > Learn > Pregnancy > >Is CoQ10 Safe During Pregnancy?

Is CoQ10 Safe During Pregnancy?

Feb 24, 23 5 min

If you’re pregnant, you might be wondering if it’s safe to take CoQ10. Read on to learn more about CoQ10’s effects on pregnancy. 

By OBGYN and fertility expert Dr. Kenosha Gleaton

A lot of couples trying to conceive (TTC) may begin taking CoQ10 for its demonstrated effects on egg and sperm health, but are you supposed to continue taking it while you’re pregnant? Let’s see what the research has to say. 

What does CoQ10 do?

Coenzyme Q10 or CoQ10 is a naturally occurring nutrient in the body that acts as an antioxidant. CoQ10 is found in most of our cells and tissues, but the amount tends to decrease as we get older. A vital role of CoQ10 is to aid in energy production and cell maintenance, but there have been many other demonstrated benefits of taking CoQ10 for women and men [1]. Some studies show that CoQ10 may support heart health, improve sperm parameters, and while data is still limited, we’ve seen positive effects on egg and embryo quality [1-3]. 

What are the ingredients in a CoQ10 supplement?

If you’re shopping for a CoQ10 supplement, you could come across a few different variations. Some brands may combine CoQ10 with vitamins or minerals, or you may find a stand-alone CoQ10 supplement with nothing added. There are two common forms of CoQ10 you’ll see in supplements: ubiquinol and ubiquinone [4]. These are both natural forms of CoQ10 that the body actually shifts between regularly. While more studies have been completed with ubiquinone, there is little data to suggest that one form is better than the other [4]. Keep an eye out for any additives you may see in CoQ10 supplements, but the main ingredient to look for is either ubiquinone or ubiquinol. Natalist CoQ10 contains 120 mg of ubiquinone in one serving of liquid capsules, or 200 mg of ubiquinone and added natural ingredients in the CoQ10 gummies

CoQ10 and fertility

CoQ10 has been shown to help women get pregnant, especially those with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or undergoing IVF, but how does CoQ10 impact pregnancy [9-10]?

For the general population CoQ10 has been deemed a safe supplement with low risk of toxicity and very few side effects [1]. For those pregnant and breastfeeding, no safety claims have officially been made, and while CoQ10 is considered “possibly safe,” it should be discussed with a healthcare professional prior to use [5-6]. 

 

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Is CoQ10 pregnancy safe?

While there is no official safety claim for CoQ10, we do know there have been observed associations between higher CoQ10 levels and a decreased risk of preeclampsia, as well as positive associations with fetal growth and balanced metabolic changes during pregnancy [7-8]. If an OBGYN or other healthcare provider recommended you start taking CoQ10 while trying to conceive, ask them for a recommendation on its continued use while you’re pregnant. 

What are some pregnancy safe supplements?

It’s important to have an idea of what supplements are necessary as well as what supplements are safe or unsafe for pregnancy. First things first, you should absolutely be taking a prenatal vitamin if you’re TTC and while you’re pregnant. Prenatal vitamins should contain all the vital nutrients you need to support a healthy pregnancy, including: 

  • Calcium for supporting the development of teeth and bones

  • Omega DHA for development of the brain and eyes

  • Iron for delivering oxygen and nutrients

  • Iodine, choline, and folic acid for central nervous system development

  • Vitamin D and A for healthy skin and eyesight

Key Takeaways

  • CoQ10 is an antioxidant that is found in almost every cell of the human body.

  • CoQ10 has been shown to improve heart health, sperm parameters, and egg quality.

  • There are two ingredients commonly seen in CoQ10 supplements, ubiquinone or ubiquinol, and both are considered effective.

  • There is no established safety claim for using CoQ10 while pregnant or breastfeeding, but no toxic effects have been reported either. Always speak with your healthcare provider before introducing supplements into your regimen, especially while pregnant or breastfeeding.

  • There have been some studied benefits of using CoQ10 while pregnant, such as a decreased risk of preeclampsia, but you should not take any dietary supplements without speaking to your healthcare provider first.

  • Some pregnancy-safe supplements include calcium, omega DHA, iron, vitamin D, and others, which should all be included in a comprehensive prenatal multivitamin.

  • If an OBGYN or other healthcare provider recommended you start taking CoQ10 while trying to conceive, ask them for a recommendation on its continued use while you’re pregnant. 

 

References:

  1. Sood B, Keenaghan M. Coenzyme Q10. [Updated 2022 Jan 19]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK531491/
  2. Xu Y, Nisenblat V, Lu C, et al. Pretreatment with coenzyme Q10 improves ovarian response and embryo quality in low-prognosis young women with decreased ovarian reserve: a randomized controlled trial. Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 2018;16(1):29. Published 2018 Mar 27. doi:10.1186/s12958-018-0343-0
  3. Salas-Huetos A, Rosique-Esteban N, Becerra-Tomás N, Vizmanos B, Bulló M, Salas-Salvadó J. The Effect of Nutrients and Dietary Supplements on Sperm Quality Parameters: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials. Adv Nutr. 2018;9(6):833-848. doi:10.1093/advances/nmy057
  4. Mantle D, Dybring A. Bioavailability of Coenzyme Q10: An Overview of the Absorption Process and Subsequent Metabolism. Antioxidants (Basel). 2020;9(5):386. Published 2020 May 5. doi:10.3390/antiox9050386
  5. Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed®) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; 2006-. Coenzyme Q10. [Updated 2021 May 17]. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK501788/
  6. Coenzyme Q10: Side effects, uses, & dosage. Drugs.com. https://www.drugs.com/coenzyme-q10.html. Published July 22, 2021. Accessed February 10, 2023. 
  7. Haruna M, Matsuzaki M, Ota E, et al. Positive correlation between maternal serum coenzyme Q10 levels and infant birth weight. Biofactors. 2010;36(4):312-318. doi:10.1002/biof.104
  8. Teran E, Hernandez I, Nieto B, Tavara R, Ocampo JE, Calle A. Coenzyme Q10 supplementation during pregnancy reduces the risk of pre-eclampsia. Int J Gynaecol Obstet. 2009;105(1):43-45. doi:10.1016/j.ijgo.2008.11.033
  9. El Refaeey A, Selem A, Badawy A. Combined coenzyme Q10 and clomiphene citrate for ovulation induction in clomiphene-citrate-resistant polycystic ovary syndrome. Reprod Biomed Online. 2014;29(1):119-124. doi:10.1016/j.rbmo.2014.03.011
  10. Xu Y, Nisenblat V, Lu C, et al. Pretreatment with coenzyme Q10 improves ovarian response and embryo quality in low-prognosis young women with decreased ovarian reserve: a randomized controlled trial. Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 2018;16(1):29. Published 2018 Mar 27. doi:10.1186/s12958-018-0343-0

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