What is Superoxide Dismutase?
SOD is recognised as the first line of defence against reactive oxygen species (ROS), where ROS impair the function cells and tissues and thought to underlie the pathogenesis of various diseases. SOD catalyses the dismutation of superoxide radical (harmful) into oxygen and hydrogen peroxide (not harmful). However, like many other protective compounds which naturally occur in the body, SOD decreases with age, making cells more vulnerable to oxidative stress. Hence, we need regular SOD supplementation to maintain our health.
Oxidative stress and ROS cause cell damage and are the main cause of numerous pathological conditions, such as chronic inflammation, accelerated aging and cardiovascular diseases. SOD plays an important role in inflammatory diseases by neutralizing superoxide radical without affecting the immunological functions of phagocytes. It is found to have positive effect in countering allergies. Studies have also found demonstrated the protective role of SOD against inflammatory reactions caused by ultraviolet radiation.
Overproduction of ROS has found to lead to a loss of blood vessel tone and hypertension, therefore SOD is used to remove superoxide radical and restores blood pressure to near-to-normal values. The increased in production of ROS through glucose autooxidation has been reported to be the cause of diabetes. Thus, SOD consumption helps increase the antioxidant defences in human body.
The potential therapeutic uses of SOD have been discussed for a several years, and a diet rich in antioxidants supplied from fruits and vegetables is recommended to maintain health. For example, soybean, green tea, grapes, tomatoes and so on due to the high amount of antioxidants found in it.
Researches in France found a variety of cantaloupe melon containing high levels of SOD and this is crucial as the melon extract serves as a protective layer in order to keep SOD safe during the digestive process, since SOD is sensitive to heat and acidity. It is showed that when SOD activity is preserved during the digestive process, it is possible to induce antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of it by oral supplementation.
Therefore, SOD dietary supplementation have a protective effects against oxidation stress which can cause damage to our cells leading to various disease. It is important to prevent our cells from exposing to excess oxidative stress in order to maintain a healthy state of the body.