Tomato is one of the most popular fruits in the world. It’s also one of the most nutritious. Tomatoes belong to the red fruit or berry variety of Solanum lycopersicum. This fruit is native to Mexico and was spread to the rest of the world by Spaniards colonizing the Americas. Today, tomatoes come in various forms and are eaten in many ways: raw, cooked, baked, as beverage, and more.
Tomato is high in vitamin C. It’s also packed with phytochemicals that fights certain types of cancers. Tomatoes are also full of lycopene and carotene; both are powerful antioxidants that prevent oxidative damage to healthy cells.
Benefits of Tomatoes
- Lower the risk of prostate, breast, brain, and thyroid cancers
- Protect the brain from neurodegenerative diseases
- Keep the skin healthy and minimize its ability to resist the negative effects of UV rays
- Reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes
Craving for Tomatoes? You Could Be Vitamin or Mineral-Deficient
Got an intense craving for tomatoes? There’s more to this than just that of a craving. It could be your body’s way of telling you that you lack the right amount of vitamins and minerals to function properly. Below are possible vitamins and minerals you are lacking whenever you crave for tomatoes:
Tomatophagia is a rare eating disorder that causes severe cravings for tomatoes. This condition is often linked to iron deficiency causing anemia. Although there is no correlation between anemia and iron deficiency, people suffering from tomatophagia are advised to take hemoglobin tests to determine the level of red cells in the blood. They are also encouraged to boost the iron content in their diet by eating more iron-rich foods like shrimp, sardines, clams, liver, and beef.
Tomatophagia could also point to potassium deficiency. Potassium is a mineral that helps keep the muscles healthy, regulates fluids in the body, and helps maintain normal blood pressure. If you have sudden craving for tomatoes, it’s best to boost your intake of potassium-rich foods like bananas, spinach, broccoli, and yogurt.
Vitamin C Deficiency
Tomatoes are one of the best sources of vitamin C. An average-sized tomato has about 14mg of vitamin C. Vitamin C is essential for healthy gums and teeth; it strengthens the immune system and keeps the skin healthy. What’s more, vitamin C is an antioxidant. This means, it helps protect the body from free radicals and cuts the risk of developing certain types of cancers.
Vitamin A Deficiency
Vitamin A helps maintain or boost vision clarity, delays the signs of aging, and boosts the immune system. It also helps stimulate cell growth, prevents acne, as well as inhibits the development of serious health problems ranging from HIV to cancer!
Vitamin E Deficiency
Vitamin E is a popular ingredient in many skincare products because apart from keeping the skin glowing and clear, this vitamin is also prevents premature aging and hydrates the skin on a cellular level. Vitamin E doesn’t just preserve the youthfulness of the skin; it also keeps the heart young by lowering bad cholesterol in the blood and prevents most types of heart illnesses!