New Research Database Highlights Tomato Products’ Link to Health Benefits

February 9, 2010

APTOS, Calif., Feb. 9 /PRNewswire/ — The Tomato Products Wellness Council (TPWC) can think of hundreds of reasons why Americans should make tomato products a regular part of their diet. In fact, after cataloguing and summarizing more than 450 valuable health-related research studies, more than 300 of those studies link the consumption of tomato products to health benefits.

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“A lot of time and effort was spent compiling and analyzing the hundreds of scientific studies which repeatedly show that eating more tomato products every day can help protect us against a multitude of diseases,” said Bret Burton-Freeman, Ph.D., MS, of the National Center for Food Safety and Technology and the University of California, Davis, Department of Nutrition. She added, “The research consistently shows strong evidence that eating more tomato products every day promotes wellness and may protect your body against cardiovascular disease and prostate cancer.”

Tomato products may combat oxidative stress and recent work suggests that tomato products may also have a role in reducing inflammation. Both oxidative stress and inflammation are thought to be the root of many chronic, life-threatening diseases including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, neurodegenerative diseases and obesity-influenced health issues – just to name a few. And the research doesn’t end there. The collection of twenty years worth of research includes new studies that indicate that tomato products may offer particular strength in guarding against cardiovascular disease and prostate cancer.

According to the National Cancer Institute, prostate cancer is the most common non-skin cancer in the United States affecting 1 in 6 men. Recent research has shown that diet modification might decrease the chances of developing prostate cancer, reduce the likelihood of having a prostate cancer recurrence or help slow the progression of the disease.

“There is promising research studies indicating that the consumption of tomato products can help lower the risk of prostate cancer,” said Sharon Palmer, RD, a registered dietitian. “With this information and given that tomato products are affordable and loaded with nutritional benefits, consuming more tomato products is an easy way to provide a protective effect in lowering the risk of prostate cancer.”

Other research highlighted in the online database includes studies linking tomato products to protection against sun damage and colorectal, gastric and lung cancer protection. Preliminary evidence also links tomato products with health benefits as varied as bone health.

One reason for processed tomatoes’ benefits to health and wellness is the presence of the powerful antioxidant, lycopene. It can be more easily absorbed into the body when consuming processed tomatoes due to the preserving process of cooking, stewing, bottling or canning tomatoes within hours of being harvested. The lycopene in processed tomato products is more available for absorption in the body than fresh tomatoes.

The searchable database can be downloaded at www.tomatowellness.com.

TPWC is a voluntary group of growers, processors and well-known brands which oversee scientific research and identifies emerging trends and key issues of interest to the processing tomato industry. For more information on the research presentations, please visit: www.tomatowellness.com

SOURCE Tomato Products Wellness Council

Source: newswire

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