close-up of cod liver oil capsules in a container on a table
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Fish oil and coenzyme Q10, also known as CoQ10, are two nutrients that may help protect the body from disease. Both substances can be found in oily fish but are also available as supplements. Although fish oil and CoQ10 have different effects on the body, they may both be useful for prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Fish Oil Components

Fish oil is derived from fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, anchovy, herring, trout and anchovies. The oil of these fish are rich in a type of fat called omega-3 fatty acids, which are a type of fat that the body is unable to make. Omega-3 fatty acids are a form of poly-unsaturated fatty acids and play many roles in the human body, including maintaining the health of brain cells.

Fish Oil Benefits

Fish oil may be particularly helpful for people with high cholesterol, high blood pressure and heart disease. In addition to lowering blood pressure and raising levels of "good" cholesterol, fish oil may help protect people from heart disease and diabetes. Fish oil may also help reduce inflammation, making it a useful remedy for rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus and other inflammatory disorders.

CoQ10 Physiology

Coenzyme CoQ10 is a substance similar to a vitamin that is found in all cells of the body. In addition to helping cells harvest food for energy, CoQ10 also is a potent antioxidant. This substance can be found in oily fish, such as salmon and mackerel, whole grains and organ meats. Although many people get an adequate amount of CoQ10 from their diets, supplementation can benefit some people with health problems.

CoQ10 Uses

Much like fish oil, coenzyme Q10 may help protect the heart by improving cholesterol levels and lowering blood pressure. CoQ10 may also help protect the heart from additional damage when taken after a heart attack and may also benefit people with heart failure. This substance may also help prevent diabetes and damage to the heart due to surgery or chemotherapy. Finally, CoQ10 may help gums affected by periodontal disease heal and repair faster.