Today, we look for versatility, variety and convenience in the foods we eat. Tomatoes top the list of versatile foods because they are not only good for you, they complement almost any meal or occasion.
There are more than a dozen varieties of tomatoes. Slices of large, round tomatoes are great on the grill; Roma or plum tomatoes make delicious sauces; and cherry or grape tomatoes make a convenient snack.
Tomatoes’ versatility makes them ideal for all eating and entertaining occasions, whether used as an ingredient, an accompaniment, or as a stand-alone.
To ensure the best flavor, never refrigerate. The tomato makes an enzyme that produces flavor as it ripens. Once the temperature falls below 55 degrees, it permanently stops producing that enzyme.
The tomato has been called many things throughout history: a Peruvian apple, a love apple, and even, by many people at least, a vegetable. Today, however, this lovely fruit is fast becoming known as Superfood!
While not able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, this super hero of the nutrition world is able to do some pretty amazing things.
For example, some studies show tomatoes may help decrease the risk of prostate cancer as well as breast, lung, and stomach cancers.
And the Herald Sun reported in 2003 that the yellow jelly around the seeds has yet another benefit: They may stop blood cells from clumping together, which sometimes leads to strokes and heart attacks.
What is it about this little red fruit that makes it so amazing?
The word lycopene doesn’t sound very appetizing, but this powerful antioxidant is the chemical in tomatoes that is not only responsible for its red color but also for its disease-fighting powers.
Just ask an Italian. Italian cooking relies very heavily on tomatoes and tomato products. And some studies have suggested that this heavy intake of tomatoes by Italians has resulted in a lower incidence of cancer of the digestive tract.
Now, you’re probably thinking you have to consume tons and tons of fresh tomatoes to enjoy any health benefits. Not true.
In one research study, it was reported that people who ate tomatoes at least every other day had greater lung capacity. And the tomatoes don’t even have to be fresh!
Again, research shows that the lycopene in tomatoes is more easily absorbed by the body if processed into ketchup, sauce, and paste. So, not only are tomatoes a superfood, they’re an easy superfood to include in your diet.
Of course, fresh tomatoes are still beneficial and packed with wonderful nutrients. Not to mention, it’s delicious.
Just remember the one rule about fresh tomatoes: don’t put them in the refrigerator. The refrigerator destroys not only the flavor; it also destroys the nutrients.
Go ahead and do something good for your health tonight. Have a tomato.
Why do you need to eat tomatoes?
Do you eat tomatoes? Of course, you know that tomatoes are now eaten easily around the world. You can find tomatoes everywhere as part of fruits and vegetables.
Some experts say that tomatoes are known as a source of nutrition because they contain a large number of vitamins and minerals that can support our body’s health.
Tomatoes have been first cultivated in Peru and then brought to Mexico. Now, tomatoes are sold everywhere. In grocery stores, tomatoes are often picked unripe and ripened in storage with ethylene.
Which one is better, unripe or ripe?
Tomatoes that are ripened in storage with ethylene, a plant hormone produced by many fruits that acts as a cue to begin the ripening process, tend to stay longer but have a poorer flavor than tomatoes ripened on the plant.
They may be recognized by their color, which is more pink or orange than the ripe tomato’s deep red.
Based on the nutrition content, red tomatoes have more vitamin A than green tomatoes. But in this case, green tomatoes have more protein.
If you eat tomatoes every day, it is beneficial in preventing cancer to 50%. Tomatoes will fight different kinds of cancer and protect your heart from heart attacks.
Tomatoes contain various kinds of ingredients.
Here are some of them:
Lycopene is one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants. It is beneficial to fight different kinds of diseases, most of all cancer.
Fiber in tomatoes prevents diabetes, asthma, and colon cancer and lowers the amount of cholesterol in the body.
Vitamin C and A are antioxidants that fight free radicals. They fight against aging and soothe the skin and hair.
Potassium, vitamin B6, folate, and niacin have proven effects in lowering cholesterol levels, lowering blood pressure, and working against heart disease.
Vitamin K in tomatoes helps build bone.
Chromium and biotin improve the body’s ability to process sugar and fat, which may improve fighting diabetes and help nerve function.
Riboflavin helps with energy metabolism and fights against migraine headaches.
If you consume ripe, unripe or tomato-based food products like tomato sauce or tomato pasta all deliver many nutrients with multiple mechanisms of action to prevent you from different kinds of diseases.
Improve Overall Health with Tomatoes
Tomatoes have countless health benefits that have made it a significant addition of diets throughout the medical world.
It is low in calories, and considered as an excellent food for people who want to lose weight and improve their overall health.
Because of its nutritional benefits, tomatoes are considered by many as a medicinal food. Lycopene, one of the most potent antioxidants in nature is found it tomatoes.
Antioxidants are important in both humans and plants and may help prevent cell damage that can be caused by oxidative stress.
Lycopene is vital antioxidant that helps fight cancerous cell formation and other kinds of health ailments.
This component is responsible for the tomatoes’ red color and also contains its disease-fighting properties. Lycopene is essential in preventing the development of many cancers and other health ailments.
Examples of cancers that can be prevented by tomatoes are:
In addition to lycopene, tomatoes are also high in vitamins A and C, this fruit is also cholesterol free. The vitamin content of this fruit is adequate for keeping individuals healthy.
Many health studies show that one tomato is enough to supply the human body’s daily vitamin C requirement. These high levels of vitamin C help the body increase its immune system naturally.
This fruit also contains folic acid, which is considered by many health specialists as a necessary component for the recovery of human body cells.
Other nutrients like sodium phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, oxalic acid, and sulfur can be found in a single tomato.
Tomatoes are beneficial to the heart and its juice is used by many to treat high blood pressure.
Unlike several vegetables and fruits, some of the health benefits of tomatoes seem to be boosted whenever they are cooked, especially when it comes to prostate cancer prevention. This kind of cancer is the most frequent cancer experienced by many men.
Some medical studies suggest that regular tomato consumption may promote proper prostate function.
In addition to cancer prevention, tomato can also reduce excessive prostate enlargement, which is very common in men beyond 50 years of age.
Tomatoes are used as a skin care alternative because of the antioxidants it contains. It brightens dull skin and other skin imperfections because of the vitamin C it contains.
The calorie content of tomatoes makes it a favorite alternative for skin care. It also contains vitamin A, C, E, K, B1, B6, B3, B2, iron, manganese, and potassium.
These components are necessary for building healthy skin. These natural acidic properties of tomato rids the skin of excessive oil and also takes off the natural dead cells, shrunk pores, and also tones skin.
One of the primary reasons for adding fruits and vegetables like tomatoes in one’s diet is they contain many phytochemicals.
Because of these phytochemicals, vegetables may prevent the body from getting various ailments that is the reason why it is very important to consume plenty of vegetables in one’s food regimen because of the mineral content.
Tasty Tomatoes Add Variety to Meals
Tomatoes are an important dietary source of lycopene, an antioxidant being studied for its ability to keep tissues healthy.
Tomatoes also are high in vitamins and fiber – one medium red tomato has 20 percent of the daily requirements of vitamin A, 40 percent of the daily requirements of vitamin C and as much fiber as a slice of whole wheat bread.
Bella Roma Di Pomodoro
You will need:
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 medium garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
12 Italian-style tomatoes (plum tomatoes), cut into chunks
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 pound penne pasta
10 basil leaves, torn by hand into small pieces
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
You have to:
In a large skillet, heat olive oil and sauté garlic.
Add Bella Roma (plum) tomatoes, salt and pepper.
Simmer sauce for 10 to 15 minutes; do not overcook the tomatoes. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions.
Spoon the sauce over pasta and sprinkle with parsley and basil.
This serves 6.
Nutritional information per serving: 364 calories, 8.3g total fat, 1.3g saturated fat, 20 percent calories from fat, 3 percent calories from saturated fat, 12g protein, 63g carbohydrates, 0mg cholesterol, 4g dietary fiber, 65mg sodium.
Tomatoes – No Refrigeration Required
Did you know that one of the most popular vegetables is actually a fruit?
Categorized by botanists as a fruit but eaten by consumers as a vegetable, tomatoes are appreciated for their combination of sweetness and acidity.
Any way you slice it, tomatoes are a delicious way to add nutrients to the diet. They are rich in vitamins A and C and are a good source of potassium. Tomatoes are also naturally low in sodium and contain no cholesterol.
Many people store tomatoes alongside other vegetables in their refrigerator’s crisper drawer, but that’s not the best place for them.
Tomatoes should be stored at room temperature to maintain maximum flavor. Cool temperatures inside your refrigerator will stop the ripening process and begin to decrease the flavor and change the texture. Try storing your tomatoes in a decorative bowl on the counter.
Tomatoes and bananas help each other ripen quicker. Tomatoes and bananas emit a naturally occurring ripening gas called ethylene and when you store the two together they both ripen rapidly.
If you need to ripen a tomato quickly, store it in a closed paper bag on the counter. The ethylene gas speeds up the ripening process when confined around the fruit in a closed bag.
Although tomatoes are native to Central and South America, they are now eaten throughout the world and are an ingredient in countless recipes.
Many people consider tomatoes an essential part of their vegetable gardens each summer and they are available at your local market year-round.
Pico de Gallo
Pico de Gallo is a fresh tomato salsa often served as a dip for tortilla chips but it’s also terrific spooned onto grilled fish, chicken or pork.
8 Bella Roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
2 jalapenos, minced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Mix all ingredients together and enjoy.
Serves: 1/2 cup of vegetables per serving
Nutrition Information per Serving: calories: 15, total fat: 0.2g, saturated fat: 0.03g, % of calories from fat: 8, % of calories from saturated fat: 1, protein: 1g, carbohydrate: 3g, cholesterol: 0 mg, dietary fiber: 1g, sodium 149mg.
Do you love tomatoes?
How often do you consume tomatoes?
Are you aware of its nutritional and health benefits?
What are your favorite recipes with tomatoes?
How do you store tomatoes at home?