Xanthohumol, a life extender in hops and beer
Xanthohumol, a flavonoid and phytochemical in hops and beer, may have a life-extending effect. This is suggested by an animal study published by researchers at Ubon Ratchathani Rajabhat University in Thailand in Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology, Part C.
The researchers experimented with the fruit fly Drosophilia melanogaster. They exposed the flies to different concentrations of xanthohumol and then measured how long they lived.
Xanthohumol is a prominent flavonoid in hops and beer that contains hops. It has a weak estrogenic and anti-estrogenic effect. Xanthohumol can change into isoxanthohumol and 8-prenylnaringenin. In the body, the enzyme CYP1A2 is responsible for the latter conversion.
8-Prenylnaringenin is the strongest natural phytoestrogen in our diet. 8-Prenylnaringenin is present in hops in small quantities, and sometimes present in even smaller quantities in beer. The possible estrogenic effect of hops and beer is the result of the metabolism of xanthomumol to 8-prenylnaringenin.
CYP1A2 is therefore required for this conversion. That enzyme also deactivates caffeine. The more resistant you are to caffeine, the more likely foods and supplements containing xanthohumol may have estrogenic effects.
Xanthomul [XN] extended the average lifespan of the fruit flies by an average of 15 percent. The flies that did not receive xanthohumol lived for up to 90 days max. If the researchers added xanthohumol to their medium, maximal life span became 94-98 days.
The life-extending effect of xanthohumol became more evident when the researchers also added harmful substances to the medium. The figure above refers to fruit flies exposed to hydrogen peroxide. Just say: oxygen radicals.
In similar experiments, the researchers were able to show that xanthohumol made the flies more resistant to stress factors such as cold, heat, acetic acid and starvation.
Xanthohumol stimulates the production of natural protective enzymes. The researchers found increased concentrations of SOD1 and -2 and catalase in the flies that were given xanthohumol.
Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol. 2021 Feb 4;244:108994.
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