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Fruit that is thought to be vegetable, 10 benefits of tomatoes

Who doesn't know tomatoes? You must have consumed fruits that are often mistaken for this vegetable. The color is red, the taste is sweet and sour (depending on the level of maturity) we often encounter both in food and drink. In addition, tomatoes can also be found in the form of processed food products such as sauces and puree.

Although often thought to be vegetables, tomatoes turned out to be in the fruit category. The fruit that is usually orange or red can be consumed in various ways. The benefits of tomatoes for the health of the body are diverse, ranging from adequate body nutrition to prevent cancer.

Tomatoes contain natural antioxidants called lycopene. This substance can help combat the effects of cancer-causing free radicals. Other antioxidants found in tomatoes are polyphenols, naringenin, and chlorogenic acid. In addition, tomatoes are low in calories and fat, but rich in carotenoids, lutein, sugar, vitamin A, vitamin C, folate and potassium. No wonder the benefits of tomatoes are also abundant.

Various Benefits of Tomatoes for Body Health

Here are some of the benefits of tomatoes that are believed to prevent and even alleviate the symptoms of certain diseases, including:




Maintain a healthy heart and blood vessels

A number of studies show that the benefits of tomatoes are closely related to heart health and reduce risk factors for heart disease. Potassium and lycopene content is effective in reducing bad cholesterol or LDL levels and helps maintain the stability of the heart rhythm. Nutrients in tomatoes are also proven to reduce inflammation associated with the risk of heart disease, heart attacks and strokes, especially in people with obesity.

Maintain weight

Tomatoes that are low in calories, carbohydrates and fats, but rich in other nutrients, have benefits in maintaining body weight. The benefits of this one tomato is important for those of you who are losing weight, because various nutrients in tomatoes can meet nutritional needs when dieting.

Tomatoes can help increase good cholesterol levels in the body

Talk about cholesterol, you must have heard about good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. Good cholesterol is meant here is cholesterol that dissolves in water (high density lipoprotein) or HDL. While bad cholesterol is cholesterol with low density lipoprotein or LDL. Because the solubility is low, the higher the LDL level, the greater the chance of a blockage.

A group of researchers looked at the effect of tomato consumption on fat profiles in 98 healthy people. As a result, in the test group who consumed tomatoes in their diet (approximately 300 grams a day), there was a decrease in LDL levels and an increase in HDL levels up to 15%! So, if you are on a diet to lower cholesterol, tomatoes can be a good choice for your daily menu.

Maintain healthy skin

According to one study, lycopene is thought to be able to improve the skin's ability to protect itself from harmful ultraviolet (UV) exposure and help keep the skin looking youthful. In addition, the content of vitamin C in tomatoes also functions as a collagen stimulant and antioxidants that help prevent skin damage by sunlight, pollution and smoke. Tomatoes also help prevent fine wrinkles and improve overall skin texture.

Maintain eye health

Tomatoes contain various important nutrients to protect eye health. The benefits of tomatoes which contain antioxidants lutein, zeaxanthin, and carotenoids can help reduce symptoms of tired eyes, and reduce the risk of aging eye-related diseases, such as macular degeneration.

Prevent cancer

Because it contains antioxidants such as lycopene, carotenoids, and polyphenols, tomatoes can help prevent DNA damage in cells due to free radicals that can cause cancer. Therefore, the benefits of tomatoes are thought to play a role in preventing various dangerous cancers, such as prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, stomach, mouth, lung, breast and bladder. However, this assumption still requires evidence and further research because various studies conducted so far still show inconsistent data.

Good for diabetics

Tomato is a good source of fiber for the body, and low in fat and sugar. Because the benefits of tomatoes from their nutritional content are abundant and are foods with a low glycemic index, it is not wrong if tomatoes are considered a good food for diabetics.

Prevent depression

The benefits of tomatoes from their nutritional content are also thought to play a role in reducing the risk of depression. Research shows that older people who eat tomatoes every week are less likely to experience depression. However, this tomato effect still needs to be studied further.

Reduce high blood pressure

The benefits of other tomatoes come from the potassium content. Increasing potassium intake and reducing sodium (salt) is very important for lowering blood pressure. Research shows that eating tomatoes and reducing salt intake in the daily diet can reduce blood pressure in patients with mild high blood pressure.

Prevent constipation

Eating foods with high water and fiber content, such as tomatoes, can help to improve bowel movements, reduce the risk of constipation, and prevent dehydration.

Unlike other fruits or vegetables that lose their nutritional content after being cooked or after going through the processing process, tomatoes in processed form still have quite good antioxidant levels of lycopene. Lycopene in tomatoes itself is found in the cell wall, so to get the best benefit from lycopene, some studies suggest tomatoes are consumed after processing, especially those involving heat. You can also make tomatoes into juice to get the benefits of lycopene in tomatoes.

Various benefits of tomatoes are still in need of further research and evidence. However, don't hesitate to add tomatoes to your daily diet, because tomatoes contain many important nutrients.





References

References

Martí, R., Roselló, S., & Cebolla-Cornejo, J. NCBI. Tomato as a Source of Carotenoids and Polyphenols Targeted to Cancer Prevention. Cancers. 2016.

United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service USDA (2018). Basic Report: 11529, Tomatoes, red, ripe, raw, year round average.

Pullar, J., Carr, A., & Vissers, M. NCBI. The Roles of Vitamin C in Skin Health. Nutrients. 2017.

American Heart Association AHA (2016). How Potassium Can Help Control High Blood Pressure.


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Is a health and wellness enthusiast. In him free time, she loves to travel and taste different types of teas.

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