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      Slash your skin cancer risk by 50 percent with red and tangerine tomatoes
      05/12/2020 / By Skye Anderson / Comments
      Slash your skin cancer risk by 50 percent with red and tangerine tomatoes

      Soaking up the sun is the best way to get some much-needed vitamin D, plus that enviable sun-kissed skin. But soaking up too much UV rays is just as bad as spending hours in a tanning bed, and exposes you to?serious health risks. Besides developing skin problems like sunburn, skin discoloration and other signs of early aging,?excessive sun exposure can also cause skin cancer.

      In the U.S., skin cancer — or melanomas of the skin — is the most common form of cancer developed by adults,?according to?the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The risk, health experts say, is quite high, with one out of five individuals?likely to develop skin cancer?when they hit 70. The different types of skin cancer vary in appearance and severity, some?with a tendency to recur or become aggressive, and even cause death.

      But before you decide to avoid sunlight?like the plague?— a?decision with equally?regrettable health consequences — here’s some good news from dermatologists: Most skin melanomas, when caught early, are treatable. Studies also say you can easily?prevent skin cancer without denying yourself the enjoyment of going outdoors. Eating cancer-fighting foods like tomatoes, for instance, can help slash your risk of skin cancer by half.

      The anti-cancer goodness of tomatoes

      Scientists from The Ohio State University?(OSU) recently reported that a diet rich in red or tangerine tomatoes provided?hairless mice a certain degree of protection?against?skin cancer. Despite repeated?exposure (thrice weekly) to UVB — the type of UV ray responsible for causing sunburn and skin cancers, especially malignant melanomas — they found that mice on a tomato-based diet developed considerably fewer tumors than mice on a normal diet that consisted mainly of corn starch and dextrose.

      According to the researchers, previous trials involving human volunteers have shown that eating?tomatoes helps reduce the severity of sunburn. This led them to hypothesize that tomatoes may also offer protection?against skin cancer caused by UVB.?Research on tomatoes suggest that the carotenoid pigments they contain, which give them their bright red or orange color, are responsible for?their?positive effects. In fact, lycopene, the main carotenoid in tomatoes, gets deposited in your skin when you eat tomatoes, and it protects your skin cells from UV damage.

      But here’s what truly makes?tomatoes you skin’s best friend: They contain more than just?lycopene. There are plenty of other?skin-protective compounds?in these fruits (or vegetables, depending on how you want view them) that also end up in your skin. In their study, the OSU researchers identified the tomato compounds that?decreased UV-induced tumor-formation in mice as glycoalkaloids. These chemicals normally?help tomatoes resist bacterial, fungal and viral infections. In humans, tomato glycoalkaoids like tomatidine are also known to boost the immune system?and help lower blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels.

      Other health benefits of eating tomatoes

      Fresh, organic tomatoes are very easy to add to any type of diet. Juicy, sweet, versatile and full of beneficial nutrients, tomatoes will not only enhance the flavor (and color) of your meals, they’ll also boost your overall health. Per 100 grams of raw tomatoes, you can get 0.9 grams of protein, 3.9 grams of carbohydrates and 1.2 grams of fiber. You can also get vitamins C, B9 (folate) and K from tomatoes, as well as potassium and a variety of plant nutrients. These include antioxidants like lycopene, beta-carotene and chlorogenic acid, and anti-inflammatory compounds like naringenin.

      Here’s what you can expect from this collection of essential and plant-derived nutrients?present in?tomatoes:

      • Improved heart health
      • Increased cancer protection
      • Skin protection and improved skin health
      • Improved vision
      • Improved digestive health
      • Better diabetes management

      You can enjoy these amazing benefits by adding fresh, organic tomatoes to your salad and omelets, or using them as ingredients to home-cooked meals. When eaten regularly, tomatoes can easily boost your health in a lot of different ways.

      Sources:

      CDC.gov

      SkinCancer.org

      ScienceDaily.com

      UIHC.org

      Pubs.ACS.org

      Healthline.com

      Health.com

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      100% Fresh Food News, Right at Your Fingertips!
      Find out everything you need to know about clean and healthy eating when you sign up for our FREE email newsletter. Receive the latest news on all the top superfoods, recipes, natural remedies, diets, food tips, and more!
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