How Tomatoes are Good For Your Health

Nutrient Content

Vitamins

Excellent Source of (Daily Recommended): 

  • Vitamin C – 32%
  • Vitamin A – 25%

Good Source of (Daily Recommended): 

  • Vitamin K – 15%

A Source of:

  • Vitamin B6 – 6%
  • Folate – 6%
  • Vitamin E – 4%
  • Thiamin – 4%
  • Niacin – 4%

Minerals

Good Source of (Daily Recommended): 

  • Potassium – 10%

A Source of:

  • Manganese – 8%
  • Magnesium – 4%
  • Phosphorus – 4%
  • Copper – 4%
  • Iron – 2%
  • Zinc – 2%

Other

Also a Source of:

  • Fiber – 7%
  • Omega-6 Fatty Acids
  • Antioxidants – Beta-carotene, Lycopene

*All nutritional information found at (1)

How Tomatoes Prevent Chronic Disease

You may be wondering why we classified tomatoes as a vegetable. We do so because in 1893, the U.S. supreme court ruled to classify tomatoes as a dietary vegetable. (2) Tomatoes, like many vegetables, prevent several chronic diseases that plague America today. Most notably, tomatoes help to prevent cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

How Tomatoes Prevent Cancer

In general, vegetables are recommended for daily consumption. Tomatoes are a great resource to incorporate into your diet to prevent various cancers.

  • Tomatoes are one of the best vegetables for cancer prevention, helping to protect against, namely, lung, stomach, and prostate cancers. (345) Cancer is often caused by uncontrolled growth and proliferation of cancerous cells. Cancer is accelerated by the activity of free radicals, which damage tissues. (2)

  • Tomatoes have a high antioxidant capacity. Antioxidants fight against free radicals and can prevent the proliferation of cancer cells.

    • Specifically, lycopene, an antioxidant found most abundantly in tomatoes, is believed to be linked to a number of cancer preventive abilities. (6)

    • One study showed that the higher levels of carotenoids found in tomatoes might also link directly to reduced risk of breast cancer. (7)

  • Tomatoes are also high in vitamin C. Vitamin C has been shown to reduce your risk of a number of cancers including lung, breast, blood, and colorectal cancers. (8, 9, 10, 11)

How Tomatoes Prevent Diabetes

  • Lycopene has also been shown to help prevent type 2 diabetes.

  • Tomatoes have a low glycemic index rating, indicating that they do not impact blood sugar levels dramatically. (12)

  • Combined with the antioxidants and fiber present in tomatoes, their nutrients effectively defend against the onset of type 2 diabetes, helping also to reduce inflammation–another biomarker of diabetes. 

  • Beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium, folate, and other flavonoids act together to help protect against type 2 diabetes.

How Tomatoes Prevent Cardiovascular Disease

  • Tomatoes can help reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. Typically, cardiovascular disease is caused by accumulation of bad LDL cholesterol. Over time, this cholesterol can form larger clumps that block blood vessels and inhibit blood supply to certain areas of the body. Ultimately, this can lead to heart disease and stroke. (13)

  • To combat this, lycopene and beta-carotene in tomatoes help lower total LDL cholesterol in the body.

    • Tomatoes increase apolipoprotein a1 levels. This is a protein with an important role in lipid metabolism. The study also found that tomatoes decrease your systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Via multiple mechanisms, tomatoes help you prevent cardiovascular diseases. (14)

  • Antioxidants can address inflammation and blood clotting. The compounds provide a protective inner layer on blood vessels, which, in turn, protects against blood clotting. (15)

Tomato Promotes a Number of Health Benefits

Tomato not only helps to prevent diseases, but support and promote the function of several important systems in our bodies.

How Tomatoes Promote Digestion

  • Tomatoes are high in fiber and also have a high water content. As a result, tomatoes can help you maintain regular bowel movements. The soluble fiber feeds healthy gut bacteria, whereas insoluble fiber makes it easier for food to pass through the gut. Both relieve constipation and improve overall digestive health. (16)

How Tomatoes Promote Immune Health

  • Tomatoes promote immune health through the rich antioxidants and vitamin C. The antioxidants can help fight against the free radicals. Vitamin C helps produce white blood cells, which fight common infections. (17)

How Tomatoes Promote Bone Health

  • Similar to other vegetables, tomatoes are a good source of vitamin K. Vitamin K is essential for bone formation and bone density. Ultimately, the more vitamin K that you have in your body, the less likely you are to suffer from diseases such as osteoporosis. (18) Though, it should be noted that excessive consumption of vitamin k can be poisonous, as it is a fat soluble vitamin.

How Tomatoes Promote Skin Health

  • Tomatoes are loaded with compounds that protect skin from sunburns. Among these protective compounds are lycopene and vitamin C, both of which have been shown to improve skin health and prevent wrinkle formation as we age. (19)

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