More than 200 years ago, tomatoes were thought to be poisonous in the United States because their relative species are. However, now these are considered to be among the healthiest food in the world. Tomatoes are called a functional food because they provide more than just basic nutrition. Since they contain healthy phytochemicals like lycopene, they are able to help prevent chronic diseases. Moreover, there are many reasons why people should love eating tomatoes. Anyone who wants to be perfectly healthy should know these to improve their diet.
Benefits of tomatoes
Eating tomatoes can improve the health of a person. Since they are a rich source of many beneficial nutrients, they can be trusted to fight illnesses and help maintain wellness. Here are some of the health benefits of eating these nutritious veggie-fruits.
Tomatoes are known to be a good source of folic acid and vitamins A and C. Furthermore, they are rich in antioxidants such as lycopene, alpha-lipoic acid, lutein, beta-carotene, and choline. For the information of everyone, lycopene is responsible for making tomatoes red in color. Alpha-lipoic acid aids in converting glucose to energy. It can also help in controlling blood glucose, preserve nerve and brain tissues, and even improve vasodilation. Then, choline is a valuable nutrient that helps with memory, learning, muscle movement, and sleep.
Eating tomatoes can also help improve heart health. Tomato extracts and fresh tomatoes are proven to help decrease total cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL cholesterol. Tomato extracts can also aid in preventing the clumping of platelet cells together in the blood. This helps lower the chance of having atherosclerosis and other heart problems. The reason why tomatoes are good for the heart is because they contain phytonutrients that provide heart-protection benefits. Among these phytonutrients are esculeoside, which is a glycoside, and chalconaringenin, a flavonoid. As more nutrients are discovered about tomatoes, they increase their popularity as being one of the best food for the heart.
Fight against diseases
Aside from being good for the heart, tomatoes are known to help prevent other diseases. Here are some of them.
Since tomatoes are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, they can help fight free radicals, which cause cancer. Among the types of cancer that can be prevented by eating tomatoes are prostate cancer and colorectal cancer.
Tomatoes have folic acid that helps decrease the risk of depression by stopping the formation of homocysteine in the body. Homocysteine can prevent nutrients and even the blood from reaching the brain. When this happens, the production of dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine, which are called feel-good hormones, is interfered.
Tomatoes are also rich in fiber and have high water content. Therefore, they can also aid in curing constipation. Eating a lot of tomatoes will keep the person hydrated and even help in regulating bowel movements. Studies show that people who have high intake of tomatoes are less likely to suffer from constipation.
Without a doubt, tomatoes can do a lot to help lower risk of certain diseases. Moreover, they can keep people healthy and fit. For this reason, increasing tomato intake is advisable and should be promoted by health institutions.