Power Up Your Meals with Tomatoes
Tomatoes are a wonderful fruit, and are essential to any weight loss regimen. Say you decided to have steak and potatoes for dinner, but you want to lose weight. You eat a half portion of what you were originally planning to eat, but you replace the remainder with insalata caprese, a delightful salad of tomato slices, paper thin mozzarella cheese and fresh basil leaves. Voila! You're on your way starting your healthy diet!
Tomatoes can't be beat for versatility. You can eat them raw, add them to a salad, put them in your sandwich, make them into pasta sauces and pizza toppings, and toss whole or pureed into soups and stews, or even make them into juice. They're cheap too, and can even be grown at home. Normal garden tomatoes are easy to grow on the vine, but cherry tomatoes are harder to cultivate.
Tomato Nutrition Facts
A tomato contains vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium and iron. It also packs a lot of lycopene, which is responsible for the tomato's bright red color. It is a fundamental antioxidant that a body needs to fight off many diseases and health complication.
Anti-Carcinogenic & Lycopene-Rich
One benefit of lycopene is that it's able to help stop the formation of cancerous cells within our bodies. Lycopene neutralizes the free radicals that cause cell damage too.
Research has proven that tomatoes are effective in the prevention of prostate, colon, stomach, rectal, stomach, lung, breast and endometrial cancer. A more recent study shows that eating tomatoes can assist elderly people in their quest to maintain a more active lifestyle.
Freshly picked tomatoes are the most nutritious. Based on the Food and Nutrition Research Institute's Food Composition Table (FCT), if you have ½ cup fresh tomato (40g) as your appetizer for your lunch and dinner, you will be consuming 10.8 calories, 0.36g for protein, 0.12g for fat, 12.4mg for calcium, 10.4mg for phosphorus, 0.4mg for iron, 152mg for beta carotene, 0.02mg for thiamin, 0.012mg for riboflavin, 0.24mg for niacin, and 13.6mg for Vitamin C.
Surprisingly, even cooking tomatoes can help make them even more nutritious. For example, tomatoes cooked in olive oil are even easier to absorb nutrients like lycopene from, so don't feel guilty when you eat pasta slathered in tomato sauce (but do minimize the salt).
You can exchange a lot of unhealthy things in your diet with tomato-based alternatives, such as salsa instead of cheese dip, or tomato sauce instead of a fattening cream-based sauce. I find that tomatoes are also excellent for sealing in juices, such as when I'm steaming a nice white fish like cod. For hot summer nights, nothing beats a cold tomato gazpacho. Let your imagination run riot!
Got Tomato On Your Mind?
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My passion is to help you live your healthiest and most harmonious life, but in a way that’s realistic and practical for you as a unique individual on this planet. My philosophy is all about “balance,” never a diet since a diet is not sustainable for life, aka Kill The Diet.