Sources: B. B. Freeman, K. Reimers. Tomato Consumption and Health: Emerging Benefits. American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 2010; DOI: 10.1177/1559827610387488
Remember when your parents told you to eat of vegetables because they are good for you? Well, even in today's high-tech world, consuming fruits and vegetables is still recommended and beneficial. According to an article in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine eating tomatoes and products made from tomatoes can help to make you healthier while decreasing your risk of conditions such as cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and cancer.
Researchers have found that tomatoes are an excellent source of dietary lycopene: a very powerful antioxidant that increases its bio availability after being cooked and processed. While most vegetables and fruits lose some of their nutritional benefits through the cooking process this is not true when it comes to tomatoes. Researchers have found that there is a relationship between eating tomatoes and lowering your risk of certain cancers and conditions. This holds true for osteoporosis, ultraviolet light induced skin damage, cognitive dysfunction and cardiovascular diseases. The fact that tomatoes are available to just about all cultures and people of all ages makes them a cost-effective way to benefit from their nutritional advantages.
New scientific research concerning tomatoes and tomato products shows that they are a simple and effective way to help individuals increase their intake of vegetables while at the same time improving their overall eating patterns and ultimately leading to better health. Tomatoes are considered one of the most important non-starchy vegetables that are consumed in the diet. Research supports the relationship between reduced cancer risks and heart disease in the consumption of tomatoes and tomato products. The consumption of tomatoes is recommended because of the ease of eating them, and they are an effective and easy way to increase your intake of vegetables. Dietary guidelines have recently moved tomatoes into a category of orange/red fruits and vegetables, whose consumption is encouraged because of their health benefits. Although most people usually refer to the tomato as a vegetable it is actually a part of a fruit plant known as Solanum lycopersicum.
Some of the most common health benefits of eating tomatoes include the following:
1 Fibre in tomatoes can help to prevent asthma, diabetes, colon cancer and also helps to lower the amount of cholesterol in the body
2 Tomatoes contain vitamin C and vitamin K which are excellent antioxidants for fighting free radicals.
3 Tomatoes contain potassium, vitamin B6, folate and niacin all of which have been proven effective in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure levels, which help to fight against heart disease
4 Vitamin K in tomatoes helps to build bone.
By consuming either ripe or unripe tomatoes or tomato-based food products such as tomato sauces you help to deliver powerful nutrients to your body that can help to prevent the formation of many cardiovascular diseases.