Credit: © guy / Fotolia

Credit: © guy / Fotolia

Eating tomatoes can cut skin cancer risk in half

Eating tomatoes can cut skin cancer risk in half, according to the latest research from the Ohio State University.

The study press release explained the following results:

It found that male mice fed a diet of 10 percent tomato powder daily for 35 weeks, then exposed to ultraviolet light, experienced, on average, a 50 percent decrease in skin cancer tumors compared to mice that ate no dehydrated tomato.

The theory behind the relationship between tomatoes and cancer is that dietary carotenoids, the pigmenting compounds that give tomatoes their color, may protect skin against UV light damage, said Jessica Cooperstone, co-author of the study and a research scientist in the Department of Food Science and Technology in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at Ohio State.

This study showed us that we do need to consider sex when exploring different preventive strategies,” said the study’s senior author, Tatiana Oberyszyn, a professor of pathology and member of Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center.

What works in men may not always work equally well in women and vice versa.”

Lycopene, the primary carotenoid in tomatoes, has been shown to be the most effective antioxidant of these pigments,” she said.

However, when comparing lycopene administered from a whole food (tomato) or a synthesized supplement, tomatoes appear more effective in preventing redness after UV exposure, suggesting other compounds in tomatoes may also be at play.”

Skin cancer describes a group of different cancers that affect the skin, including basal cell carcinoma and melanoma. During the summer months, it is particularly important to be aware of skin cancer risks.

Nearly 5 million people in the US are treated for skin cancer annually. In the most recent statistics from the year 2006, 3.5 million cases were diagnosed in 2.2 million people.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends prevention tips including: selecting the right sunscreen, avoid tanning beds and UV tanning beds, and covering up from the sun with clothing. It is also recommended to check yourself regularly and get examined by a doctor once a year for skin cancer.

The study showing that eating tomatoes can cut skin cancer risk in half was published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Note: None of the information in our website is intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. The content on our website is for educational purposes only.

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1. “Skin Cancer Facts.” Skin Cancer Foundation. Skin Cancer Foundation, n.d. Web. 7 Jul. 2017.
2. “Prevention Guidelines.” Skin Cancer Foundation. Skin Cancer Foundation, n.d. Web. 7 Jul. 2017.
3. “Diet Rich in Tomatoes Cuts Skin Cancer in Half in Mice.” Ohio State University. Ohio State University, 13 July 2017. Web. 13 July 2017.
4. “Tomatoes Protect against Development of UV-induced Keratinocyte Carcinoma via Metabolomic Alterations.” Nature News. Nature Publishing Group, 11 July 2017. Web. 13 July 2017.

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