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Watermelon = The New Viagra?

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Scientists say the fruit boosts a little-known side effect.


Want to get in the mood? Forget oysters. Science Daily is reporting that watermelon may have Viagra-like effects on the body. Researchers say watermelon relaxes blood vessels, much like Viagra does, and may even increase libido.

"The more we study watermelons, the more we realize just how amazing a fruit it is in providing natural enhancers to the human body," said Dr. Bhimu Patil, director of Texas A&M's Fruit and Vegetable Improvement Center in College Station.

Watermelon contains the nutrient citrulline. When watermelon is consumed, citrulline is converted to arginine. "Arginine boosts nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels, the same basic effect that Viagra has, to treat erectile dysfunction and maybe even prevent it," Patil says. "Watermelon may not be as organ-specific as Viagra, but it's a great way to relax blood vessels without any drug side effects." He recommends storing the uncut watermelon at room temperature before eating for maximum health benefits.

So go ahead -- add a watermelon to your Fourth of July shopping list. We guarantee you'll be seeing fireworks.

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