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Old 07-04-08, 04:47 PM   #1
Spokes man
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I always knew watermelon was a good recovery food . . .

But today's news adds a whole new aspect to this, and on the Fourth of July, too:

Scientists: Watermelon yields Viagra-like effects

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) A slice of cool, fresh watermelon is a juicy way to top off a Fourth of July cookout and one that researchers say has effects similar to Viagra but don't necessarily expect it to keep the fireworks going all night long.

Watermelons contain an ingredient called citrulline that can trigger production of a compound that helps relax the body's blood vessels, similar to what happens when a man takes Viagra, said scientists in Texas, one of the nation's top producers of the seedless variety.

Found in the flesh and rind of watermelons, citrulline reacts with the body's enzymes when consumed in large quantities and is changed into arginine, an amino acid that benefits the heart and the circulatory and immune systems.

"Arginine boosts nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels, the same basic effect that Viagra has, to treat erectile dysfunction and maybe even prevent it," said Bhimu Patil, a researcher and director of Texas A&M's Fruit and Vegetable Improvement Center. "Watermelon may not be as organ-specific as Viagra, but it's a great way to relax blood vessels without any drug side effects."

Todd Wehner, who studies watermelon breeding at North Carolina State University, said anyone taking Viagra shouldn't expect the same result from watermelon.

"It sounds like it would be an effect that would be interesting but not a substitute for any medical treatment," Wehner said.

The nitric oxide can also help with angina, high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems, according to the study, which was paid for by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

More citrulline about 60 percent is found in watermelon rind than in the flesh, Patil said, but that can vary. But scientists may be able to find ways to boost the concentrations in the flesh, he said.

Citrulline is found in all colors of watermelon and is highest in the yellow-fleshed types, said Penelope Perkins-Veazie, a USDA researcher in Lane, Okla.

She said Patil's research is valid, but with a caveat: One would need to eat about six cups of watermelon to get enough citrulline to boost the body's arginine level.

"The problem you have when you eat a lot of watermelon is you tend to run to the bathroom more," Perkins-Veazie said.

Watermelon is a diuretic and was a homeopathic treatment for kidney patients before dialysis became widespread.

Another issue is the amount of sugar that much watermelon would spill into the bloodstream a jolt that could cause cramping, Perkins-Veazie said.

Patil said he would like to do future studies on how to reduce the sugar content in watermelon.
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Old 07-04-08, 06:07 PM   #2
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It will be interesting to see if watermelon sales "spike" after this story.
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Old 07-04-08, 06:22 PM   #3
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You'd prob need to eat a pound or two of rind to get any effect. The stuff is citrulline, some lifters take it thinking it helps them pump up. That's not in any manner, shape or form an endorsement. As a group lifters take tons of crap including drugs that will kill you or worse, give you boobs.

Citrulline is a precursor amino acid in some complex chemical dance. I don't understand it. But since it's not the first time I've heard people talking about
it help to pump things up maybe there's something to it.
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Old 07-04-08, 06:38 PM   #4
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It will be interesting to see if watermelon sales "spike" after this story.
I just bought a dozen.
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Old 07-04-08, 07:21 PM   #5
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I just bought a dozen.
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Old 07-04-08, 07:34 PM   #6
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Is that a watermelon in your pocket, or ...

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Old 07-04-08, 08:10 PM   #7
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We're having watermelon manana. But I won't be eating the rind.
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Old 07-04-08, 10:28 PM   #8
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You'd prob need to eat a pound or two of rind to get any effect.
The report I saw, said that the amount required was 6 cups. That's quite a bit of fruit.
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