Summer is officially here and that means its tomato season! There's nothing quite like a farm fresh tomato - they have a special smell, different from store bought tomatoes, thin skins, and come in an array of bright colors from red to purple, yellow, orange and green. I love tomatoes and I'm desperately anticipating the ones I've planted to ripen so I can start turning them into sauces and salsas. Tomatoes are amazing for you and are high in antioxidants and lycopene, both which help fight cancer cells from forming. 


Cancer Fighters

Lycopene is what gives fruits and vegetables their color, and is actually a type of antioxidant that helps fight free radicals that attack cells and eventually can cause cancer. Some people take lycopene to help prevent heart disease and cancer, but you could actually just eat tomatoes. Tomatoes contain about 85% of dietary lycopene. 

Bones & Heart Health

Lycopene may also help bone health. A study done by the University of Toronto put postmenopausal women on a non-lycopene diet and after four weeks they showed significant signs of bone-mineral loss.

Since tomatoes are high in antioxidants they may also reduce LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) and blood pressure. Tomatoes also have 9% fiber per serving which also helps lower cholesterol and are a good source of potassium. Potassium is what makes your heart beat - it triggers your heart to push and squeeze blood through your body. It helps your muscles, nerves, and kidneys do what they do and filter blood. Foods, like tomatoes, that are high in potassium keep everything working and your heart healthily pumping away.

The Breakdown

1 whole tomato gives you:

  • 0.2 grams of fat
  • 22 calories
  • 0 mg cholesterol
  • 6 mg sodium
  • 292 mg potassium (8% daily value)
  • 4.8 grams carbs
  • 1.5 grams of fiber (6% daily value)
  • 20% daily value of Vitamin A
  • 28% daily value of Vitamin C