Science Says Purple Tomatoes Can Prevent Cancer
Cancer is one of the most dangerous diseases in the world. It affects millions of people every year, and it can be found everywhere, even in some foods you might eat regularly. But there’s a solution for this problem: purple tomatoes!
The team of plant biologists, led by Cathie Martin, have uncovered the powers in a new generation of “functional foods” that could potentially offer protection against serious diseases. She plans to investigate whether these anti-cancer properties also protect humans who eat tomatoes or another similar vegetable rich with lycopene chemicals, which were shown to be effective at killing cancer cells and preventing tumor growth without hurting healthy tissue.
British researchers have created a genetically-modified purple tomato that can give protection against cancer. In tests, mice who were prone to developing the disease lived nearly 33% longer on their diet supplemented with these modified tomatoes – and they displayed no adverse side effects from this new food.
Tomatoes are already known for being rich in antioxidants; but what if you could make them even more so? A team of British scientists at John Innes Center found out that by altering one gene from snapdragon flowers, then inserting it into our beloved fruit would allow us to eat healthier while potentially protecting ourselves against cancer! Surprisingly enough, there was not any negative reactions shown when tested on animals (mice) which had been previously diagnosed as having an increased risk for getting. What’s more is that when these mice were fed this modified tomato diet, they showed an increase in their lifespan by as much as 33%!
These results are extremely promising – not only would it be a low-cost option to provide much needed nutrients to those who cannot afford high quality health foods, but also provides even larger implications for the future of our health. James Dale, the scientist who headed up this study, was quoted saying “tomato is an important food crop worldwide and increasing the antioxidant content would have a significant public health impact in terms of reducing rates of cancer and heart disease.”
This research group plans on conducting further studies to evaluate how these modified tomatoes can help slow down the growth of cancerous cells and to see how they compare against other dietary components such as lycopene, EGCG from green tea, vitamin C or resveratrol – all of which have already been proven to help prevent the spread and development of tumors.
Lycopene and Heart Health
Another benefit of the lycopene in purple tomatoes is that it can be used as an antioxidant to lower your risk of heart disease.
Studies have shown that people who consume foods high in lycopene have a lowered risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD). A study released by the American Heart Association showed this significant correlation between lycopene levels and their effects on CVD.
Tomato Nutrition Facts: Phytochemicals & Antioxidants
Anthocyanins are the pigments that give red fruits (such as strawberries) their color. They can also be seen in leaves and flowers of plants like eggplant (aubergine), peaches, plums, cherries and blueberries.
Like anthocyanins from other colored fruits, these compounds help protect cells from oxidative damage while offering free-radical scavenging benefits.
Studies show that phytochemicals from red tomatoes protect against cancer. Lycopene, a type of antioxidant found in tomatoes (and some other fruits and vegetables), may help to lower your risk for prostate cancer. Other studies suggest people who eat tomato sauce daily have up to a 29% reduced risk of bladder cancer.
They also have been shown to prevent the growth of existing tumors, reduce the incidence or recurrence of precancerous lesions, and slow the development or progression of prostate cancer cells in cell culture. Lycopene’s anti-inflammatory properties are probably why they may help with these health issues too: it is effective at reducing inflammation as well as repairing damaged tissue.
Eating foods rich in lycopene such as tomato has been linked to the prevention of inflammatory diseases, including cancer. That is a pretty impressive list of health benefits!
The Health Benefits of Tomatoes – They Can Help You Live Longer
Tomatoes are also great for your heart and cardiovascular system. The high levels of lycopene, which some researchers have called “the most powerful antioxidant in our blood”, help prevent damage to cholesterol and blood vessels (which can prevent stroke or other cardiovascular problems).
Lycopene has been shown to reduce LDL cholesterol levels by over 25%, making it easier for your body to eliminate this type of bad fat from your arteries. Studies have also suggested that consuming tomato products reduces the risk of heart disease by reducing oxidative stress on LDL particles and circulating fatty acids.
Other studies have shown an inverse relationship between lycopene consumption and heart disease, meaning that people who eat more tomatoes seem to have a lower risk of heart disease. This is good news! In fact, some studies indicate that eating tomato sauce may help prevent atherosclerosis as well as stroke, diabetes mellitus and coronary artery disease.
People who consume the most tomato products also seem to have healthier blood vessels. Eating tomatoes seems to improve endothelial function – which means it can help with erectile dysfunction by improving circulation in your blood vessels and increasing the supply of oxygen-rich blood to your organs (including all those important parts.).