Native to South America, tomatoes are the part of the nightshade family and grow on sprawling plants (vines). It is the most harvested plant world over for its fruit; which we also use as a vegetable. Currently there are about a thousand cultivars that suit different growing conditions. Tomato sizes can differ from 5mm to 6cm across. They are available in different shades too, to brighten a platter; yellow, red, orange, green and some ornamental shades of black, white light red, and purple, with different patterns. Compared with other fruits and vegetables, tomatoes are a little bit bitter and acid in taste that gets tempered during cooking. They are not used in preparing for their taste, flavor, and color alone, but for their tremendous health advantages too.
TYPES OF TOMATOES
There are various species of tomatoes and they come in various sizes and colors too. When we say “’tomato’” we create an image of red tomato ion our eyes but actually they are available in various colors like yellow, purple, green, black etc. There can be a combination of two or more colors in tomatoes and some of them are also available in stripes
Following we have described about some of the various types tomatoes:
Beefsteak Tomatoes: Beefsteak tomatoes are big in size which is used for food preparation, salad decoration, sandwiches and also for various garnishing. Generally, a beefsteak tomato is around one pound in weight, but it may weight over two pound also! They are in kidney-bean shape, thinner skin, and smaller life expectancy makes commercial use unlikely.
Cherry Tomatoes: There are many types of cherry tomato vegetables. These tomato vegetables are very small in size as a cherry and are a little bit sour in flavor. They are usually included to whole in soups, salads or can be consumed as such.
Currant Tomatoes: These are as little as a pea and they are known for their unusual powerful taste. They are commonly used in soups as well as in salads. You can also use them for garnishing the dish. Many dietitians suggest their usages, because they provide more health benefits than other tomato types.
Globe Tomatoes: This is the most common wide range as they are medium-sized tomatoes which are widely used for food preparation. Chopped globe tomato vegetables are mostly used in burgers and all types of junk food. You can enjoy tomato soup or salted pieces with your mid day meals or dinner.
Grape Tomatoes: These tomatoes are shaped like grapes and their size also suits well with grapes. They are sweeter than most other types of tomatoes, and you can add them to soups or other vegetables.
Pear Tomatoes: As the name indicates, they look like a pear, but they are almost like cherry tomatoes, if size of them is taken into account. They are available in various colors like yellow, orange, and red. They are consumed as a snack or can be used as salad and for garnishing dish.
Plum Tomatoes: These are like oblong (rectangular) formed tomatoes. They are relatively wider than other tomatoes, and have less plant seeds. This is one of the factors; they are regarded as the best types of tomatoes for sauce and tomato paste too. Roma is the most well-known wide range of plum tomatoes. This is one of the best kinds of tomatoes which are used for canning processes. You can easily grow plum tomatoes in medium containers.
The nutritional value mentioned below is for one cup of sliced tomato, comparative to 180g.
NUTRIENT: NUTRITIONAL VALUE
- Calories: 32.4 calories
- Protein: 1.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 7.1 g
- Potassium: 427 mg
- Calcium: 18.0 mg
- Magnesium: 19.8 mg
- Phosphorous: 43.2 mg
- Fluoride: 4.1 mcg
- Vitamin A: 1499 IU
- Vitamin C: 22.9 mg
- Vitamin K: 14.2 mcg
- Folate: 27.0 mcg
HEALTH BENEFITS OF TOMATOES ARE AS FOLLOW:
Lycopene, the carotenoid found in tomatoes is considered to help in melanoma prevention as it is an effective anti-oxidant. Lycopene assist to protect tissues and other structures in the body from the oxidizing which is linked with damages and toxins that is known to harm the white blood cells. More than raw, it’s the prepared form of tomatoes that breaks down cell walls (of tomatoes) launching considerable amounts of focused carotenoids. A frequent intake with some fats allows lycopene to be better absorbed in body. Natural ones and their products have more cancer-fighting properties than traditionally grown types. Lycopene also allows lowering the risk of other types of melanoma, especially prostate, abdomen, rectum, and lung malignancies.
As this vegetable is loaded with high amount of potassium, niacin, vitamin B6, and folic acid, it helps to lower high-cholesterol and hypertension, considerably decreasing the chances of heart-related conditions.
Tomatoes are the best source of vitamin K that allows in maintaining blood clots and avoids hemorrhages. Foliate of tomatoes reduces the chance of potential brain problems in an unborn baby. Tomato juice and pulp is found in many anti-aging and sunscreen products, hence, a regular consumption of tomatoes will help you to protect form skin against the harmful UV rays, reduce pre-mature wrinkles, easily cure sun burns, and improve overall epidermis texture and tone it. Like a natural blood purifier, it allows detoxing the system of all toxins and also keeps the digestive tract healthy, by preventing the incident of diarrhoea and bowel problems. Studies indicate that its frequent intake also helps in reducing the chance of developing bladder infections, bladder cancer, and break down gallstones. Consuming it without seeds decreases the chance of developing kidney stones and gall gallstones.
Lycopene increases pro-collagen, the compound that maintains your skin look firm and younger. The same molecules also helps avoid sunburn problem. The studies shows that eating tomatoes regularly will help you to reduce the risk of osteoporosis which is a brittle bone disease that can further lead to bone fractures, disability, and deformity if proper care is not taken.
Looks like lycopene is not the only disease-fighting component in the delicious red fruits. It’s unproductive, but beginning analysis indicates that meals which contain little nutritional smoking, such as tomato vegetables and sweet peppers, may help avoid Parkinson’s disease.
Lycopene content present in tomato is known to have disease fighting ingredient. Besides that, research has revealed several times that this sweet red fruit help effectively in treating Parkinson’s disease. In addition it ensures sound and peaceful sleep as well. Tomatoes contain an excellent source of vitamin C.
Tomatoes are versatile fresh fruits or vegetable one can eat them raw, prepared, as dry powder found in ready-made soup packages, and even as clean juice. Available throughout the year, and at an affordable rates, fresh or canned, enjoy them daily to get the highest possible health benefits.