What is Lycopene?

Whenever someone comes across nutritional contents of tomatoes, one question always pops up what is Lycopene? The answer is lycopene is natural compound with antioxidant qualities which belongs to carotenoid clan along with beta-carotene and others of their kind. It is also known act against tumors. There more than 600 types of carotenoids available on earth till now. One of them is Lycopene. But the problem is the metabolisms in human beings cannot convert them in to retinol most commonly known as vitamin A.  lycopene is one of the strongest antioxidants known to man and it tends to free radicals like a soldier on the battle field. That’s the reason researchers say that this is the only nutrient they are aware of that can fight cancer like no other. The 50% of the carotene content of our bloods is taken up by lycopene and that is quite an amount compared to huge variety of carotenes present.

As mentioned earlier tomatoes and delicacies containing tomatoes are the richest sources of lycopene. Researchers at Harvard say that tomato containing delicacies is better source than tomato juice this is because it absorbed in to the food with which it is added. If you want an even better amount of this important carotene then there are lycopene supplements available in which every 100gm of the powder contains 120mg of it Whereas 11 grams of tomatoes in raw form contain 2mg of lycopene. It has been proved that tomatoes when heated to a certain degree the lycopene content in it is more absorbable in your body cells. So when you are eating your favorite Spaghetti sauce you are having quite a good amount of lycopene and in a good form too. So do not sweat when you are asked how lycopene do you have daily. People hating tomatoes do not worry. There are other things you could have to have adequate amount of lycopene running in your blood. You could have watermelons or even guava. As a kid my mother used to make me eat tomatoes and tell me about lycopene and I used to ask what is lycopene? She told me all about it but sincerely it went all above my head. Now I understood its importance.

Have you ever thought what does give those tomatoes and watermelons that tasty red color? The color that makes you wants more. Yup! You guessed right, Lycopene. This is stuff is not only helpful to humans but to plants and animals as well. This is reason why they are so well protected from sun. People with cancer are heard asking their doctors what is lycopene? And they get the reply it one of the factors that could save your life. Studies at major universities have shown lycopene fighting against various carcinogenic agents. Especially the one which attacks our digestive system. High cholesterol containing hearts are the ones who require lycopene the most to fight against those dangerous free radicals. A Canadian group studied on this matter and got surprisingly great results.

People who have a lot of tomatoes in their diet have proved to be at lowest risk of cancer in their bowels. This was proved by scientists from Japan by experimenting on rats. Harvard people reported of protection against cancer in lungs as a benefit of lycopene. Even prostate cancer has been learnt to fought well by lycopene in very early stages .

Now whenever anyone puts forward this question, what is lycopene? You have the reply in the back of your mind. In simplest of answers it’s an antioxidant with lot of benefits.

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