What are some of your favorite superfoods? If tomatoes aren’t on that list, then they should be! From cancer-fighting properties to anti-inflammatory benefits, here are some reasons why tomatoes are the new superfood.
When you think of the word superfood what comes to mind? Is it a tomato? Tomatoes are such a commonly eaten food filled with so much nutritional power, yet you may not think of them as a superfood. Not only are tomatoes packed with flavor, but they are also filled with important nutrients like fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, calcium and more! One of the most important nutrients that truly makes the tomato a superfood is lycopene.
Lycopene is a powerhouse nutrient because it’s an antioxidant that has been shown to fight chronic disease. In the body, lycopene is mostly stored in the liver, adrenals, prostate, and can also be found in other parts of the body like the brain and skin . As we age or develop chronic diseases, lycopene bioavailability decreases . It is important to continually consume foods that are rich in lycopene such as tomatoes to supply our body with a steady source. Lycopene has been proven to have anticancer, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antidiabetic properties . Additionally, canned tomatoes are shown to have a higher lycopene content than their fresh counterpart. This is due to the heating process that tomatoes undergo during the canning process, as it activates the lycopene and allows your body to absorb and use it more readily.
So, what are you waiting for? The next time you’re at the store go ahead and grab a can (or three) of some canned tomato products to use in the kitchen this week. Need some recipe inspiration? Try out some of our favorites:
- Imran, M., Ghorat, F., Ul-Haq, I., Ur-Rehman, H., Aslam, F., Heydari, M., Shariati, M. A., Okuskhanova, E., Yessimbekov, Z., Thiruvengadam, M., Hashempur, M. H., & Rebezov, M. (2020, August 4).Lycopene as a natural antioxidant used to prevent human health disorders. MDPI. Retrieved December 16, 2021, from https://www.mdpi.com/2076-3921/9/8/706/htm