Healthy Foods List: Tomato

Tomatos are available in a variety of lovely colours, from orange to yellow and red. 


Antioxidants in Tomatoes Protect Health

The colours in tomatoes come from the antioxidant lycopene. 

Health Benefits of Tomatoes:

Tomatoes are rich in antioxidants and have the potential to have a protective effect against cancer development alongside other nutritious plant foods, when eaten as part of a balanced healthy diet. The antioxidant content may also help to protect bones, liver, blood cells and the kidney and prevent oxidation of fat in cell membranes. Eating tomatoes is good for the heart as it has a protective effect on cholesterol levels.   Like many other vegetables, cooking increases the bioavailability of nutrients and increases the nutrition delivered to your body.

Ideas for Including Tomatoes in the Diet

Tomatoes are versatile and can be incorporated into your diet in numerous delicious ways. Here are 10 ideas for including tomatoes:

  1. Caprese Salad: Combine sliced tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil leaves, and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar for a classic Caprese salad.

  2. Salsa: Make homemade salsa with diced tomatoes, onions, cilantro, jalapeños, and lime juice. Use it as a dip for tortilla chips or a topping for grilled chicken or fish.

  3. Tomato Soup: Prepare a comforting tomato soup by simmering tomatoes with onions, garlic, and herbs. Blend it until smooth and serve with a sprinkle of fresh basil.

  4. Bruschetta: Top slices of toasted baguette with diced tomatoes, garlic, basil, and a touch of balsamic vinegar for a flavorful appetizer.

  5. Stuffed Tomatoes: Hollow out tomatoes and fill them with a mixture of quinoa, spinach, feta cheese, and herbs. Bake until tender.

  6. Tomato Sauce: Make a homemade tomato sauce for pasta dishes or as a pizza topping. Simmer tomatoes with garlic, onions, and your choice of herbs.

  7. Tomato and Avocado Salad: Combine diced tomatoes with sliced avocado, red onion, and a simple vinaigrette for a refreshing salad.

  8. Tomato Omelette: Add diced tomatoes to your morning omelette or scrambled eggs for a burst of color and flavor.

  9. Grilled Tomatoes: Brush tomato halves with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and grill them until slightly charred. Serve as a side dish or on top of grilled meats.

  10. Tomato Smoothie: Blend tomatoes with cucumber, red bell pepper, and a touch of hot sauce for a unique and nutritious vegetable smoothie.

These ideas showcase the versatility of tomatoes, whether you want to enjoy them raw in salads, as a base for sauces and soups, or as a flavorful topping for various dishes.

Nutrient Breakdown of Tomatoes:

  • Calories: 18 kcal
  • Water: Approximately 95 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 3.9 grams
    • Dietary Fiber: 1.2 grams
    • Sugars: 2.6 grams
  • Protein: 0.9 grams
  • Fat: 0.2 grams

Vitamins (per 100 grams):

  • Vitamin C: 13.7 mg (23% DV)
  • Vitamin K: 7.9 mcg (10% DV)
  • Vitamin A: 833 IU (17% DV)
  • Folate (Vitamin B9): 15 mcg (4% DV)
  • Vitamin B6: 0.08 mg (4% DV)
  • Niacin (Vitamin B3): 0.594 mg (3% DV)
  • Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): 0.019 mg (1% DV)
  • Thiamin (Vitamin B1): 0.037 mg (2% DV)
  • Vitamin E: 0.54 mg (3% DV)

Minerals (per 100 grams):

  • Potassium: 237 mg (7% DV)
  • Phosphorus: 24 mg (2% DV)
  • Magnesium: 11 mg (3% DV)
  • Calcium: 10 mg (1% DV)
  • Iron: 0.27 mg (1% DV)
  • Sodium: 5 mg (0% DV)
  • Zinc: 0.17 mg (1% DV)
  • Copper: 0.05 mg (2% DV)
  • Manganese: 0.119 mg (6% DV)

Phytonutrients and Antioxidants:

  • Lycopene: Tomatoes are particularly rich in lycopene, a powerful antioxidant known for its potential role in reducing the risk of chronic diseases.
  • Beta-Carotene: Some tomato varieties contain beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A.
  • Quercetin: An antioxidant with potential anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Rutin: A flavonoid that may contribute to cardiovascular health.
  • Chlorogenic Acid: An antioxidant associated with various health benefits.

Please note that the nutrient content of tomatoes can vary depending on factors like the tomato variety and ripeness. These values provide a general overview of the nutritional composition of tomatoes per 100 grams.

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