If you think that a tomato is a vegetable… think again! Tomato is actually a fruit with fruitful load of mega health benefits.
In fact, tomatoes are one of nature’s most versatile health food that you can prepare in any way you like, whether fresh and raw mixed with your favorite garden salad or cooked with your Italian herbs and spaghetti.
Throughout most of history, Tomatoes were thought to be poisonous in much of the west since they are members of the deadly nightshade family.
The fruit was likewise believed to be toxic until the early 1800s. An eccentric man from New Jersey, Col. Robert Gibbon Johnson, had the courage to eat a tomato and to his hometown’s amazement, he survived consuming an entire basket of these red fruits — much to the bewilderment of onlookers.
He didn’t die obviously and from then on, tomatoes have been a staple of the American diet.
Why Tomatoes Are Truly Healthy
When you think of tomatoes – think of Love… Love for Lycopene. Yes, tomatoes are rich in this wonder red pigment which acts as a neutralizing antioxidant that helps defend your body from free radicals.
Recently, studies have shown that lycopene has two times the antioxidant powers than beta carotene.
The yearly tomato festival known as “La Tomatina” in Valencia, Spain may leave you swimming in rich Lycopene goodness, but researchers at Harvard discovered that men who consume more than ten servings of tomato a week ( which equals to ten slices of pizza ) will truly lower their risks for prostate cancer.
What Makes Tomato Healthy?
If Lycopene is not a good reason enough for you to start appreciating these ruby reds, you need to know that:
1. Tomatoes help reduce your chances of acquiring certain types of cancer such as cancer of the prostate, cervix, colon, rectum, stomach, mouth, esophagus, or pharynx.
2. Tomatoes help in stopping the growth of pre-existing cancer cells inside the body.
3. A glass of tomato juice (540 mm) can give you the full benefits of Lycopene, keeping you healthy for life.
4. Unlike other fruits and vegetables, cooking tomatoes can actually increase its Lycopene potency, rather than what was initially believed.
5. Tomatoes reduce your cholesterol levels, protecting your heart from cardiovascular diseases.
Regular consumption can indeed lower your LDL cholesterol and triglycerides level in your blood stream. These two are major causes of heart diseases and fat deposits in the blood vessels.
6. Tomatoes are rich in vitamins and minerals, where you can acquire 40% of your daily Vitamin C requirement. This fruit is also rich in vitamin A, K, iron, and potassium – which can mean a healthy blood and nerve health.
7. Are you a smoker? Or, are you exposed to second-hand cigarette smoke? Tomatoes can help counter the effect of carcinogens in a cigarette smoke.
8. Because of tomatoes’ rich Vitamin A content, you will have an improved eyesight.
9. Tomatoes make your gut healthy by preventing jaundice, diarrhea, or even constipation. It help regulates safe removal of toxins from your body.
10. It may surprise you that tomatoes can be good for the skin too. Topical lotions with tomato content can be great against severe sunburns.
On top of having a healthy skin, you also have a super fruit that helps reduce your risk for hypertension, Type 2 Diabetes, Urinary Tract Infections, and Gallstones.
Medical science is discovering more secrets that the good red tomato hides from its shiny surface. Tomatoes have outlived all its rivals when it comes to the healthiest fruits and veggies around.
The many health benefits that tomatoes give is enough reason to indulge yourself in tomato bliss.
They are so fun to eat that you may even think of raising your own organic tomato garden, fresh for the picking.
Nothing beats natural healthy options when it comes to enjoying the best of nature’s healthy treats. Love Your Tomato!