Last Modified on Mar 21, 2014
The debate over tomatoes has been a longstanding discussion on whether the produce is a fruit or a vegetable. However, its classification does not matter nearly as much as its health benefits. Tomatoes are nutrient-dense superfoods that are an important inclusion in any diet.
What are Tomatoes?
The tomato can be thought of as a “functional food.” The red, juicy produce gains this name as it actually goes beyond basic nutrition and has the capability of preventing chronic disease and delivering a variety of additional health benefits.
While the food is now considered a superfood of sorts, a mere 200 years ago, it was actually thought to be poisonous in the U.S. At any rate, the glossy red or yellow produce contains pulpy, edible innards and is generally eaten as a vegetable and in salads. Technically speaking, though, the tomato is a fruit as it comes from a flowering plant and has seeds. Yet, the low sugar content and the lack of sweetness characteristic of the tomato make it difficult to view as a fruit.
Health Benefits of Tomatoes
Whether fruit or vegetable, the tomato offers an array of health benefits and is a food that should be eaten regularly. Tomatoes offer a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals per serving and are naturally low in calories.
In addition to its clean nutritional profile, tomatoes also contain an assortment of vitamins and minerals. A typical serving of the fruit contains such nutrients as vitamins A and C, folate, and potassium. Likewise, the fruit is also a good source of thiamin, vitamin B6, magnesium, copper, and a variety of other nutrients. Plus, with their high water content, tomatoes are a relatively filling food.
With all of these nutritional benefits, tomatoes are an effective health source and supplement. Regularly consuming tomatoes can reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Additionally, tomatoes can be used to help manage blood pressure, blood glucose levels, constipation, skin disorders, and depression. Tomatoes are also a good source of folic acid, which helps support healthy development during pregnancy.
A beautiful, fresh food source, tomatoes do more than add taste and color to a meal. Tomatoes are an excellent source of nutrition that can treat and prevent a wide range of health conditions.
05/21/2009: Betty from Cape Town, South Africa: "can anyone tell me if fresh tomatoe is effective for hyperpigmentation? Will the lycopene stain your skin?"
[YEA] 01/22/2009: Veronica from Denver, Colorado U.S.A.: "Tomatoes (Remedy): I have recently been made aware of the benefits of tomatoes. For facial skin: I was told to cut a slice of tomatoe and rub it on my clean face before going to be and wash off in the morning. The results are amazing it is closing my pores, it has demolished the acne on my face almost inmediately, cleared my face tone and texture. I rub it all over including my mouth and eyes, my skin is looking fantastic.
For hair loss, shine and thickness and growth, I was told to puree fresh tomatoes and apply to clean hair, preferably leave it on overnite and wash off in the morning. It is really messy and I have noticed the first time lost of shine and less breackage, however it being so messy I have not stuck to the regimen wich should be twice a week.The person that told me about this had a problem with her hair thinning and acne, she swears by it and has beautiful hair and skin. Also was told drink it for overall good health, processing it through a juicer by itself or with other vegetables, I will do so, as soon as get the juicer and write back.
03/06/2009: Tee from Chicago, IL replies: "What kind of tomatoe was it or do you think it doesn't matter?"
EC: Not sure about that, but tomatoes (especially organically grown) are rich in vitamin C and also contain some vitamins B and A. Apparently vitamin C content increases as the tomato ripens.
06/14/2010: Ce from Carrollton, Tx replies: "I have found that to be somewhat true, not saying nay about that. But what I have found is that I have had to juice a combination of things.
Let me tell you, I really had terrible skin that was getting worse and worse. It made me feel very ugly, and I am not a bad looking woman (not bragging.) I'm by no means gorgeous, but I am pretty for the age of 53. Anyway, I read up on what foods are good for skin that have the right nutrients for skin, hair and nails. I found that cucumbers contribute to the smoothness of the skin. Oranges, Limes, Grapefruit all are loaded with vitamin C as well as other nutrients and most importantly collagen which is the cement which glues all of your cells and organs in place. I use carrots, but not a lot in one day so that my skin doesn't turn orange for the beta caroteine. Also, tomatoes which is also loaded with vitamin C and Lutein. There are other fruits and veggies I add with this like blueberries, and blackberries, which are your antioxidants. There is so much more to the human body that we don't know much about, but if you ask God and pray about it for several days, he will give you the needed answers for all our health and beauty issues. He has the answers."
08/08/2011: Dennis from Grand Forks, N.d. replies: "For an upset stomac, I found out for me the best and fastest remedy is tomatoes which I consume in a letuce tomato sandwich. My mother also told me that dad would go for a sweet tomato sauce for it."