Glinides (Glyburide) are popular antidiabetic drugs that act on the body by stimulating the beta cells of the pancreas to produce more insulin. While they are being prescribed to more and more type 2 diabetics, their long term use can cause serious side effects. These are usually a result of these drugs robbing the body of vital nutrients. One such vital nutrient depleted by long-term glyburide use is CoQ10. Its depletion can have serious implications on the well being of your body’s immune system.
Q10 is a co-enzyme, meaning it is an essential part of an enzyme that makes the enzyme a whole, functional unit. Enzymes are biological catalysts that help hasten the rate of a biochemical reaction. Co-enzyme Q10 is required for completing the last few steps of ATP production. ATP (Adenosine Tri-phosphate) is the energy currency of every cell of our body. The most striking effect of CoQ10 depletion is lower energy levels in the body.
Now since your immune system requires tremendous amounts of energy while mounting an immune response against pathogenic organisms, it means that in a body with lower levels of Q10, it might not get sufficient amounts of energy and may not be able to mount a response of sufficient vigor.
A study found a relationship between lower levels of CoQ10 in the body and the atrophy (wasting) of the thymus. The thymus is an important gland of the immune system. It is the site of training and recruitment of T-cells of the immune system. As levels of CoQ10 go down, the rate at which the thymus atrophies, increases. This has a severe negative effect on the immune system’s repertoire of T-cells. In fact, one study also found that CoQ10 supplementation could bring back original immunity levels.
A study on a group of elderly Italians revealed that lower levels of CoQ10 along with lower levels of vitamin E were a cause for poor natural killer cell function. Natural Killer (NK) cells are an important line of defense against virally-infected and cancerous cells.
Many studies have independently concluded that CoQ10 supplementation boosts immunity. This means that lower levels of CoQ10 in the body severely paralyzes the immune system. It also makes the body inefficient and inadequate to control viral and bacterial infections and also take care of tumor cells.
Prolonged use of glyburide is therefore a major reason for lower immune status in type 2 diabetics and this is a cause for worry because with a condition like type 2 diabetes when you are at a potential risk for getting infections, you need a strong and healthy immune system by your side. If its efficiency is hampered in any way, it may make life even more difficult for you.
Dietary supplements can give a tremendous boost to immunity – keeping the body prepared to ward off any potential infection. We recommend you use them in consultation with your medical practitioner.