Friday, April 9, 2010

Healthy Life with Tomato

World Health Medicine - Although cheap, nutrient-rich tomatoes. In the outer layers there is lycopene, an antioxidant that can prevent various types of cancer. Can also be processed into a variety of drinks and fresh food that is able to wiggle the tongue.

Tomatoes are by botanists as Lycopersicum esculentum Mill called, is a plant of the Solanaceae family, which is blooming like a trumpet. Tomato plants, including one year (annual), which means that old one-time only for the harvest period. This herb or shrub with a bushy shape can reach two meters long. Rectangular shape to a round trunk. Its leaf shape notched leaves pinnate, with no leverage.

Shape, color, taste, and texture of tomatoes is very diverse. There is a round, flat round, curly, or like a light bulb. Mature fruit color vary from yellow, orange, to red, depending on the type of the dominant pigment. It was also varied, from sour to sweet. Fruit-bunches are arranged in bunches. Fleshy fruit and a whole contains a lot of water.

Various Varieties
Some of the basis used to distinguish among varieties of tomatoes are the shape, bunches, the thickness of the meat, and water content. Based on the shape or appearance, tomatoes are classified as follows:

1. Ordinary tomatoes (Lycopersicum commune)
Form of flat round fruit, soft, irregular, and slightly grooved near the stem.
2. Apples Tomato (Lycopersicum pyriforme)
Round fruit shape, compact, a little hard to resemble an apple.
3. Potato Tomato (Lycopersicum grandifolium)
Fruits are round, large, compact, with sizes smaller than apple tomato.
4. Curly tomato (Lycopersicum validum)
Slightly oval-shaped fruit, hard. The leaves are lush and green curly dark.

Must be Cleaned
Newly harvested fruits are usually in separate separated by size and quality (grading). The determination of fruit quality based on health, rigidity, cleanliness size, weight, color, shape, maturity, freedom from foreign substances and disease, and damage by insects and mechanical injury. Category of quality that is commonly used is an extra class, class 1 and class 2.

Once sorted, tomatoes must be cleaned and washed to remove dirt on the fruit. Manure is usually a sprinkling of soil, dust and chemical substances (drugs and fertilizer spray). Apart from giving an impression of dirty, splashing soil can also carry diseases and some harmful microbes. Chemical substances that attach to the fruit, especially pesticides, if present in excessive amount can cause poisoning.

Storage of tomatoes must be done at temperatures not too high, usually carried out at room temperature. However, it would be much better if the tomatoes are stored at a lower temperature, namely in the refrigerator. High temperatures can damage the quality of tomato fruit store. Cold storage may slow the process of maturity, reduce susceptibility to microbial attack, reduce water losses, and maintain levels of vitamin C.

Tomatoes can be used either in the form of fresh or in processed form. In the form of fresh, tomatoes are often used as a food supplement ingredients (vegetables), for salads, sandwiches, chili, and so forth.

In the form of processed tomatoes can be made into various kinds of canned products, such as tomatoes whole, cut tomatoes, sauce, and puree. In addition, fruit and juice can be made in pekatkan to produce tomato paste.

During this tomato processed products that have been widely recognized by society is the fruit juice and tomato sauce. Fruit juice (fruit juice) is a liquid that does not undergo a process of fermentation, but obtained from the process of pressing the fruit is still fresh and ripe. Processing of tomatoes into juice, in addition can produce a more durable product, is also a handy beverage, delicious and refreshing taste, is also beneficial for health.

Tomato sauce is used as a food flavoring material. Making gravy is done by evaporating a portion of the water in order to obtain fruit juice viscosity in want. Into the fruit juice is added to various kinds of seasoning for flavoring. So that the sauce becomes thicker, often also added starches and other thickening.

Rich in Vitamin C and A
Tomatoes, both fresh and processed form, has a nutrient composition of a fairly complete and good. Tomato fruit consists of 50-10 percent of dry weight without water and one percent of the skin and seeds. If the tomatoes are dried, about 50 percent of the dry weight consists of reducing sugars (mainly glucose and fructose), the remaining organic acids, minerals, pigments, vitamins, and lipids.

Tomatoes can be classified as a source of vitamin C which is very good (excellent) for 100 grams of tomatoes to meet 20 percent or more of the requirement of vitamin C daily. Vitamin C to maintain healthy teeth and gums, to speed up the wounds heal, prevent the disease scurvy (skorbut), as well as to avoid occurrence of hemorrhage of blood vessels smooth.

In addition, tomato is also a good source of vitamins A (good) for 100 grams of tomatoes can be contributed approximately 10-20 percent of daily vitamin A requirement. Vitamin A is necessary for the health of the organ of vision, immune system, growth and reproduction. Vitamins A and C in tomatoes is also efficacious as an antioxidant.

Tomato juice contains vitamins and minerals are quite complete. From 100 grams of tomato juice to be obtained 7 mg of calcium, phosphorus 15 mg, 0.9 mg iron, 230 mg sodium, and potassium 230 mg. Vitamins contained in 100 grams of tomato juice is a vitamin A (1050 IU), vitamin B1 (0.05 mg), vitamin B2 (0.03 mg) and vitamin C (16 mg).

High Lycopene content
Tomatoes contain high lycopene. Lycopene is the pigment that causes a red tomato. Like beta-carotene, lycopene included in the group of carotenoids. There have been many studies that reveal the health benefits of lycopene.

Lycopene is known to have the ability as an antioxidant and can protect the body against various diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Crushed or cooked tomatoes are a better source of lycopene than raw tomatoes.

For example, the amount of lycopene in tomato juice can reach five times more than in fresh tomatoes. The researchers speculate, tomatoes are cooked or destroyed may issue more lycopene, which is easily absorbed body.

Lycopene found in the cell walls of tomato. Therefore, with a little cooking oil can remove these components. In addition, cooking tomatoes with olive oil (olive oil) allows the body to absorb lycopene better (Ahuja et al., 2003).

Phenolic components is also an important compound in tomatoes is potential, albeit in fewer numbers. This component provides a beneficial effect. Recently found that tomato puree (crushed tomatoes), containing small amounts of compounds called routine. Routine compounds can be absorbed and utilized well by the body.


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