Did You Get Your Dose of Lycopene Yet Today?

You’ve probably heard of the saying where you need to eat a dark green leafy vegetable and an orange vegetable everyday.  Have you considered eating a daily dose of red vegetables and/or fruits?

What is so special about red vegetables and/or fruit? 

Have you heard of lycopene? Lycopene is the carotenoid which primarily is responsible for giving vegetables and/or fruits the red colour. Although there are many fruits and/or vegetables rich in lycopene such as watermelon, mangoes, guava, sweet red peppers, grapefruit, I am going to focus on tomatoes today.

Tomatoes contain a combination of Vitamin C, lycopene and lutein which are all antioxidants known to protect the skin from sun damage and from wrinkles.

How Should I Eat My Tomato? Cooked or Raw? 

Cooking the tomato will significantly increase the lycopene content; however, you will lose a little bit of the vitamin C content so the answer would be: it depends on your situation.

If you are eating for skin health purposes, focus on sundried tomatoes and/or tomato sauce for the extra lycopene.

Don’t feel guilty about your pasta meal. Remember that 1 cup cooked pasta is like eating 2 pieces of bread in terms of carbohydrate content; therefore, use spaghetti squash and/or shirtataki noodles to bulk up the volume. Don’t like spaghetti squash and/or shirataki noodles? Try zoodles (noodles made from zucchini as a substitute).  San Marzano tomatoes make THE BEST pasta sauce ever!!!!

Tired of your typical sandwich and/or salad combinations? Add one or two slices of sundried tomatoes or that extra burst of flavour.  Perhaps the sundried tomatoes will make meal time exciting again! 😉

If you are eating tomatoes to increase your vegetable intake or your vitamin C intake, eating tomatoes in the raw form is good. A lot of individuals like the convenience of cherry tomatoes and/or grape tomatoes but some individuals have told me they don’t like the taste of cherry tomatoes and/or grape tomatoes. I am a lover of all types of tomatoes but in case you need some convincing to become a cherry and/or grape tomato lover, have you seen these two varieties?

My mother in law is one individual who has a strong dislike for cherry tomatoes. After I introduced her to the Axiany tomatoes, she can’t say she doesn’t like cherry tomatoes anymore! 🙂 I recently discovered the sugar bombs in the grocery store and I have to say, I am hooked!!!

Looking for a quick snack to pack for work? Make mini caprese salad skewers using toothpicks. Purchase some cherry tomatoes, mini bocconcini cheese balls, basil leaves and a balsamic glaze. String a cherry tomato, bocconcini cheese ball and basil leaf together. Drizzle some balsamic glaze over and voila! You have a very colourful and inviting snack. 🙂

caprese salad skewer

Food For Thought: Tomatoes are such a versatile fruit. What is your favourite way to enjoy tomatoes? I hope become inspired to have a little dose of lycopene everyday! 🙂

Leave a Reply