Can CoQ10 Help Prevent Migraines?


There are a few different vitamins and nutrients which have been credited with reducing the frequency and intensity of migraine attacks. Magnesium is one, riboflavin is another, and Coenzyme Q10 is a third.

Coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10 for short, has had a few studies conducted to explore its efficacy. On the whole these studies have only had a small number of participants, so it’s hard to draw definitive scientific conclusions from them in regards to migraine pain reduction, and especially hard to identify from these studies what the best dosage per day may be, but there is certainly evidence that some amount of CoQ10 could help to prevent migraine attacks.

A 2019 study which involved adult women who had episodic migraines gave its participants a high dose of CoQ10 – 400 mg per day, for three months, and found that this amount led to a reduction in migraine frequency and severity. That’s not to say that the dose has to necessarily be that high though. A small study from 2005 found that 100 mg of CoQ10 taken three times per day reduced the frequency of migraine attacks by around 48%. Another study from 2016 found that 100 mg of CoQ10 per day, when taken in addition to preventative medication for migraines, reduced the frequency and intensity of monthly migraine attacks.

Identifying what the ideal daily dosage of CoQ10 is should certainly be done. Despite the fact that CoQ10 may not be a prescription medication which you can overdose on in the classic sense of the word, taking too much can increase the risk of experiencing side effects like nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea.

In finding out whether taking CoQ10 is effective in preventing and treating migraines, it’s not even as simple as identifying how much CoQ10 should be taken, but what kind of CoQ10 should be taken and how long it may take for the benefits of it to be seen after commencing taking it.

There are two types of CoQ10 – ubiquinol and ubiquinone, and some studies have found that ubiquinol is more easily absorbed than the ubiquinone form. Which of these two kinds of CoQ10 you are taking may influence how high the daily dose needs to be to become effective. Though whichever it is, it may be up to three months of taking the supplement before any improvement in the migraines are seen.

Having said all this, and despite some evidence that CoQ10 can help to reduce the severity of migraines, CoQ10 is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in migraine treatment or prevention, and is only listed as a dietary supplement.

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