Tomato is one of the most popular garden vegetables in the world.
Although the tomato itself is technically a fruit, it is used as a vegetable in cooking and eating so it can be categorised as a vegetable.
Here are ten ways tomato can be beneficial to your health.
Prevents urinary tract infections
Tomato intake reduces the incidence of urinary tract infections, as well as bladder cancer.
This is because tomatoes are high in water content, which can stimulate urination, so tomatoes are diuretic in certain ways.
Consuming a tomato daily reduces the risk of developing hypertension, also known as high blood pressure. This is partially due to the impressive levels of potassium found in tomatoes.
Potassium is a vasodilator, meaning that it reduces the tension in blood vessels and arteries, thereby increasing circulation and lowering the stress on the heart by eliminating hypertension.
Regular consumption of tomatoes can also provide relief from gallbladder disease such as gallstones.
There have been various studies to prove the efficacy of tomato against many chronic diseases and varieties of cancer. The antioxidant properties of tomato can also be derived from processed foods.
Tomato aids in maintaining healthy teeth, bones, hair and skin. Topical application of tomato juice is even known to cure severe sunburns.
Daily consumption of tomato protects the skin against UV-induced erythema. Tomatoes rank high in the preparation of anti-aging products.
A study conducted by the Journal of the American Medical Association shows that daily consumption of tomatoes reduces the oxidative stress of type 2 diabetes.
Tomato keeps the digestive system healthy by preventing both constipation and diarrhea.
It also prevents jaundice and effectively removes toxins from the body. Furthermore, tomatoes have a large amount of fibre, which can bulk up stool and reduce symptoms of constipation.
Vitamin A, present in tomatoes, aids in improving vision, as well as in preventing night blindness and macular degeneration.
Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant that can be formed from an excess of beta-carotene in the body.
Counters the effect of cigarette smoke
The two main components of tomato, coumaric acid, and chlorogenic acid, fight against nitrosamines which are produced in the body and are the main carcinogens found in cigarettes.
The presence of vitamin A in such high quantities has also been shown to reduce the effects of carcinogens and can protect you against lung cancer.
Reduces cholesterol and protects the heart
The lycopene in tomato prevents serum lipid oxidation, thus exerting a protective effect against cardiovascular diseases.
Regular consumption of tomato has been proven to decrease the levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.
Abundant source of antioxidants
Tomato contains a large amount of lycopene, an antioxidant that is highly effective in scavenging cancer-causing free radicals.
This benefit can even be obtained from heat-processed tomato products like ketchup.
The lycopene in tomatoes defends against cancer and has been shown to be particularly effective in fighting prostate cancer, cervical cancer, cancer of the stomach and rectum as well as pharynx and esophageal cancers.
It also protects against breast cancer and cancer of the mouth, according to studies published by the Harvard School of Public Health.