PQQ an effective tool against arthritis and chronic inflammation
(Naturalhealth365) More than 50 million Americans suffer from arthritis, a painful and potentially debilitating disease. Of course, we all know about the disappointing result, in terms of conventional ‘therapies’ to treat this condition, which is why news about PQQ (Pyrroloquinoline quinone) is so refreshing.
PQQ has been shown to slow down joint deterioration and reduce chronic inflammation present inside the body. And while conventional medicine continues to promote the use of toxic drugs, many researchers believe there is a more effective way to eliminate arthritic pain – without the unwanted side effects of pharmaceutical substances.
The two most common forms of arthritis are triggered by an overactive immune system
Rheumatoid arthritis is precipitated by the release of inflammatory cytokines and enzymes that are unleashed by joint cells – or fibroblast-like synoviocytes – when the immune system (mistakenly) attacks them. The release of these inflammatory molecules is facilitated by a protein complex called NF-kappaB.
These inflaming substances not only damage cartilage and bone – causing pain, swelling and stiffness – but can affect the entire body and increase the risk of heart disease. (Studies have shown that rheumatoid arthritis sufferers are at a 40 percent risk of increased mortality – a frightening statistic indeed).
As for osteoarthritis – the most common form of arthritis – scientists used to believe that it was the result of age-related “wear and tear,” along with declining collagen production. Now, however, researchers suspect that osteoarthritis has an autoimmune component as well.
To manage arthritis symptoms, doctors may prescribe a wide variety of medications – including opiate painkillers, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, biological response modifiers, anti-TNF- immunosuppressive drugs and corticosteroids. Unfortunately, side effects and adverse reactions from these drugs can be dangerous and even potentially life-threatening.
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However, PQQ – an essential nutrient found in plant foods – could be the key to arthritis relief. An extreme antioxidant, PQQ has the amazing ability to create new mitochondria in cells – giving it anti-aging effects, and helping it to protect heart and brain health.
PQQ alleviates joint destruction – safely and effectively
In a study published in Inflammation, researchers used an inflammatory substance to activate the release of harmful cytokines from human joint cells. One group of cells was treated with PQQ, while the other was not.
When the cells were examined, the results were eye-opening.
The untreated group had increased levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokines – which included TNA-a and IL-6 – while the PQQ-treated cells produced substantially smaller amounts.
Researchers also found that PQQ halted the action of NF-kappaB, which helps activate inflammation. And, they discovered that PQQ reduced levels of matrix metalloproteinase – a destructive enzyme that breaks down protective collagen in the joints.
But, wait, there’s more.
In the next phase of the study, researchers injected arthritic mice with PQQ – and found that the PQQ-treated mice had superior protection against inflammatory degeneration and cartilage damage (when compared to mice that had not received the nutrient).
The takeaway is clear: PQQ can slow degeneration of joints and dramatically reduce inflammation.
PQQ shown to combat neurodegenerative disease
But it is not just arthritis that PQQ can benefit.
Studies have shown that this versatile nutrient can inhibit the production of inflammatory chemicals released by microglial cells – the immune system cells of the brain.
This means that PQQ has promising applications for slowing the progress of neurodegenerative diseases – including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis, stroke and neuropathy.
Scientists have also found that PQQ has the ability to protect nerve tissues within the brain – and credit it with the ability to prevent oxidative damage after a stroke, as well as to protect against neurotoxicity induced by heavy metal exposure.
Finally, animal studies have shown that PQQ can reverse cognitive impairment – an exciting prospect for all those concerned about many forms of dementia.
How can I increase my intake of PQQ?
PQQ is found in small amounts in all plant foods, but some are richer sources than others.
Celery – with 6.3 micrograms of PQQ to each 100 grams – is a definite high-ringer. Parsley – with 3.4 micrograms – is also a good source. Other PQQ-rich foods include legumes, potatoes, spinach, carrots, cabbage, kiwi fruit and tofu. (naturally, organic varieties would be best to minimize your exposure to unwanted farming chemicals.)
PQQ is also available in supplementary form. Natural health experts and integrative physicians may recommend daily doses of 10 to 20 mg – sometimes in conjunction with CoQ10, another valuable nutrient. Naturally, we suggest that you check with your doctor – before beginning PQQ supplementation.
When it comes to alleviating arthritis, PQQ – which protects cartilage and joints by a variety of mechanisms – really does have a “deep bench.” Studies on PQQ are ongoing – and will likely reveal even more of the disease-fighting potential of this extraordinary nutrient.
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Sources for this article include:
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