Tomatoes

four tomatoes on the vine
Tomatoes have a reputation for their outstanding antioxidant content and high concentration of lycopene which is considered to be very important for bone health – lack of lycopene can lead to osteoporosis particularly in women.

Fresh tomatoes as well as tomato extract has been shown to lower cholesterol levels as well as preventing the aggregation of platelet cells in the blood.

Tomatoes are high in vitamin C and K as well as in biotin, molybdenum, potassium, copper, manganese and fiber together with specific antioxidant nutrients.

Tomatoes regulate the level of fats in the bloodstream helping to prevent heart attacks.

Cancer protection is provided by tomatoes due to their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and as well as protecting against forms of cancer such as prostate cancer tomatoes have been shown to trigger programmed cell death in prostate cancer cells that have already been fully formed.

As well as tasting good and being a very versatile food tomatoes have been shown to have considerable health benefits and should form a part of every persons diet.

Green Pepper

Single green pepper on a white background

Green peppers often called sweet green peppers or green bell peppers are one of the world’s healthiest vegetables full of carotenoids including alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, cryptoxanthin and zeaxanthin.

The greatest benefit from eating green peppers is eating them raw as studies have shown that cooking especially at high temperature destroys some of the health giving properties.

Green peppers are low in calories and fat making them perfect for the diet conscious and contain a broad range of antioxidants as well as having twice the vitamin C level of oranges.

Green peppers are rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients which gives them important anti-cancer benefits reducing the oxidative stress often the cause of cancer development.

Blueberries

Lots of blueberries

Blueberries are often considered to be a ‘super food’ containing vitamins C, K, fiber, manganese and other antioxidants such as anthocyanins. The antioxidants in blueberries especially are thought to protect the body against heart disease as well as some cancers with the added benefit of improving memory.

The intake of one or two cups of blueberries a day has been shown to improve blood fat balances, including reduction in total cholesterol and to protect the blood components from oxygen damage that leads to the clogging up of the arteries.

In a study of a group of people with an average age of 76 years it was found that after a twelve week period of daily blueberry consumption scores were improved in cognitive function tests. The benefit of blueberries in lowering oxygen damage through their antioxidant nutrients was thought to be the reason in this improvement in cognitive function.