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Sources of lycopene

Healthy lycopene

Often in the context of articles on healthy eating shows the name of lycopene, which is considered one of the strongest antioxidants. What exactly is lycopene and where can I find it?

Lycopene is an organic compound from the group of carotenes, which is a natural pigment responsible for the color red, orange and yellow. The researchers suggest a number of beneficial properties of this compound may have a significant effect on inhibiting the development or prevent certain diseases, eg. prostate, cervix, breast, pancreas, gastrointestinal tract and lung, as well as atherosclerosis, Parkinson's disease and diseases of the eye such as cataracts and macular degeneration.

Lycopene for men and women

Studies have shown that lycopene is a substance that has a significant impact in the prevention of cancer. Providing the body with adequate amounts of lycopene is extremely important to both women and men. Especially encouraging were the findings of the observation relationship between lycopene intake and prostate cancer.

In 2002 he published the effects of the study, conducted by four years in a group of 48 thousand. men. Over the entire period, it was studied the eating habits of a group for the consumption of 46 different products, which include tomatoes and their products. We found that men in the diet which included at least 10 meals of tomatoes per week, the risk of prostate cancer was reduced by 34%.

For men, lycopene is indicated not only as prevention but also as a factor enhancing treatment. A study of patients in need of removal of the prostate, which for three weeks supplemented with 15 mg of lycopene per day, showed that 80% of the size of the prostate decreased.

In the case of women taking care of the appropriate amount of lycopene in the diet it is important in the prevention of diseases associated with menopause. It has been shown that the inclusion in the diet carotinoids, is useful in the prevention of osteoporosis.

This is due to the fact that these compounds significantly affect bone mineral density. On the other hand, the survey conducted among women who are at high risk of developing cervical cancer, shows that high levels of lycopene in the blood, five times reduces the risk of this disease.

Lycopene for beautiful skin

The compounds of carotenoids, including lycopene, beta-carotene and vitamin A, significantly affect the appearance and condition of the skin. At the same time regularly consume, protects the skin from harmful UV rays. Lycopene supports the synthesis of procollagen, which results in an increase in skin elasticity, by delaying the effects of aging.

A study conducted for 12 weeks, in which one group of participants was supplemented with lycopene and the other not, proved that in the case of people taking lycopene, significantly improved skin parameters such as density, lack of roughness and redness, as well as the depth of wrinkles.

Where to find lycopene?

Most of lycopene found in tomatoes and red fruits such as watermelon, red grapefruit, rosehips and papaya. However, unlike in most fruits and vegetables, which is recommended to eat raw, there is the greatest amount of lycopene in processed tomato products, especially if they contain in themselves fat.

This is due, among other things, to the fact that lycopene, like beta-carotene, and vitamins A, D, E, is best absorbed in combination with fats. For comparison 100 grams of fresh tomato is 20 mg lycopene, and tomato paste up to 150 mg. Tomato processing capabilities are innumerable. You have to prepare sauces, spreads, soups and stuffings. They are perfect for baking and cooking.

It is to do with their preparations for the winter and buy, available throughout the year, natural finished products, such as sauces and pastes the Balkans, eg. Ajvar, Macedonian ljutenica, pinjur Bulgarian brand KonexFoods, which are perfectly suited as an addition to sandwiches, meats and vegetables . In contrast, sliced ​​tomatoes, passata ready or good quality tomato puree, a good basis for sauces and soups.


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