Daily consumption of a melon extract rich in the enzyme antioxidant superoxide dismutase (SOD) was associated with improvements in sleep, concentration levels and a reduction in irritability, compared to a placebo, according to the results of a study conducted by French researchers.
The pilot study used Extramel, a melon extract rich in the enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD), dubbed “the enzyme of life” when it was discovered in 1968. This enzyme is the first antioxidant that cells use to defend themselves. It is considered more powerful than antioxidant vitamins, since it activates the body’s production of its own antioxidants, including catalase and glutathione peroxidase.
The research team analyzed 70 healthy volunteers between 30 and 55 years of age, who presented stress and fatigue on a daily basis, to which they were randomly divided into two groups. For four weeks, one of them received an extract of melon (10 mg of Extramel, corresponding to 140 International Units (IU) of SOD per capsule), while the other group received a placebo.
At the conclusion of the study, significant improvements were observed in terms of discomfort, irritability, sleep problems and fatigue of 30, 22, 38 and 26 percent, respectively, in the group that was administered Extramel, compared to the group that received the placebo.
There was also a trend towards improvement in attitude and concentration, the researchers pointed out, although it was not registered from a statistical point of view.
The authors of the study pointed out how interesting it is to try to confirm these effects of Extramel and to better understand the action of antioxidants with studies in which the number of participants is greater and the duration is longer.
Previous research in hamsters with this same ingredient showed that it reduced cholesterol levels and prevented hardening of the arteries; In addition, it decreased body weight when consumed in combination with a low-fat diet.