Although SOD has been sold as a supplement, animal research shows that oral SOD is destroyed by the digestive system before it can repair damaged joints. Responsible scientists presume the same is true for humans, and there remains no evidence supporting the use of oral SOD supplements. Additional research with enteric-coated tablets of active SOD may provide new routes of administration in the future for use in inflammatory disorders.
Nevertheless, three minerals are needed by the body to make its own SOD: zinc, copper and manganese. Deficient levels of copper and manganese will lower SOD levels in animals. Moreover, copper-deficient humans have low SOD levels which increase with copper supplementation. Supplementing copper in patients with rheumatoid arthritis has also been reported to increase SOD levels.