The tomato pill. we all have at some time had that certain person in our life we had to thank for maybe doing something special for us. But what about the “special” people who are behind easing our pains and saving lives. I refer to scientists here. What would we do without them? They tirelessly work every god sent hour to research into the unknown to make it known. Unfortunately not hailed as super heroes as they should be they don’t even get the recognition they so rightly deserve. Can you honestly say that for every time you popped a pill or swallowed medicine you considered how much work, and sleepless night’s scientists had to endure in their laboratories to bring you these? Well these worthy of more respect “caped crusaders” known for saving the day have come to the rescue yet again with another major breakthrough the “tomato pill” for people suffering with heart disease.
Scientists stated that a natural supplement made from tomatoes, taken daily, can stave off heart disease and strokes. This is good news for all sufferers and for them who fear they may suffer. The tomato pill includes an active ingredient from the Mediterranean diet – lycopene – that thwarts “harmful” LDL cholesterol known for clogging the arteries. “Ateronon,” made by a biotechnology spin-out company of Cambridge University, is being launched as a dietary supplement and will be sold over chemist counters. Experts in the industry have quoted that more tests were necessary to see how effective the treatment is. Initial tests included approx 150 people with heart disease showing an indication that Ateronon can reduce the oxidation of bad fats in the blood near to zero within two months.
Going back, scientists before the “tomato pill” developed purple tomatoes which they believed help prevent cancer. The fruit are rich in an antioxidant pigment called anthocyanin which is thought to have anti-cancer properties. The team working on the project created the tomatoes by incorporating genes from the snapdragon flower, which is high in anthocyanin. Research also found mice that ate the tomatoes lived longer. Study involving the consumption of a portion of raw tomatoes a week, which are much higher in lycopene than beta-carotene, showed a reduction in the risk of cancer of the esophagus by 40%. Senior citizens in the US that followed a diet high in tomatoes lessened their risk for cancers at all sites by 50% .
The tomato pill – For years scientists have delved into the protective capacity of tomatoes and finally have conclusion on their tomato investigations and say that thousands of lives can be saved. The heart disease tablet based on tomatoes will supposedly work better than the statins that people take to fight specific conditions. Lycopene the antioxidant red compound in tomato skins – stops cholesterol build-up. It is less commonly found in imported under-ripe fruit.
Finally because of this finding there is no need for debate over the issue of why Mediterranean people live longer on a tomato-rich diet.
Ateronon helps decrease damage to the arteries, which is the type of damage we class as threatening to a person s life. This type of damage is responsible for causing heart attacks and stroke. The tomato pill can potentially extend life and also possibly save lives and because of this it is expected to be on huge demand globally.
In the United Kingdom heart attacks and cardiovascular disease are the biggest killers causing premature death.
This list of healthy benefits from eating tomatoes is getting longer each day. Another added benefit is they help prevent inflammation. If after reading about the goodness contained in tomatoes you may want to start eating more of them. Below some tomato recipes I found to share with you.
Stuffed Cherry Tomato Tapas (Starter)
75g/3oz Spanish olives with pimento
1 tsp drained capers
1 tsp brandy
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
24 Cherry tomatoes
Blend olives in a food processor.
Add the remaining ingredients and blend.
Prepare tomatoes by cutting off the top and bottom of each tomato.
Scoop out the juice and tomato seeds from each one leaving the shell, and then spoon some of the tapenade into each shell.
Serve up on a platter and garnish with parsley. Serve cold.
Stuffed tomatoes with mushrooms, parmesan and spinach (main meal or starter)
8 beef tomatoes
2 tbsp of dried porcini
2 250g packs spinach
8 flat mushrooms cubed
300ml vegetable/chicken stock
2 cloves garlic finely minced
2 sprig thyme, remove stalks and grate the leaves
Juice of 1 lemon
100g cottage cheese or ricotta cheese
60g grated parmesan
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1 whisked egg yolk
Salt & Black pepper
1/2 tsp French mustard
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
6 tbsp Olive oil
Small handful basil
Steep tomatoes in boiling water for 1 minute. Remove with a perforated spoon, leaving the water still boiling. Place tomatoes in a bowl of iced water and leave. Add dried porcini and mushrooms to the water, then take saucepan off the stove.
Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil in frying pan on medium heat. Add spinach and cook for 2 minutes, stirring. Put into a strainer and press out all moisture. Tip spinach out on to a board and finely chop. Put in a bowl and set aside. Now remove the porcini mushroom from the water, Strain the liquid through a fine sieve and save as vegetable stock.
Return frying pan to the heat and add more olive oil. Fry the porcini and fresh mushrooms over a high heat for 3-4 minutes until lightly brown. Lower the heat to medium and pour over 300ml of the stock. Add garlic, thyme and the lemon juice. Continue to cook the mushrooms until all the liquid has evaporated and the mushrooms are shiny. Remove from heat and allow it to cool.
Cottage cheese should be drained to remove as much liquid as possible and added to the mushrooms then mixed and added into the spinach. Then add two-thirds of the Parmesan, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and let chill in the fridge.
Preheat the oven to 160C/gas 3.
Peel tomatoes and slice off the tops about a third of the way down. Keep the tops to use as lids. Carefully scoop the pulp out of the tomatoes, saving it for the dressing. Fold the egg yolk into the cottage cheese. Stuff the tomatoes with the mix, piling it up. Sprinkle parmesan on top and replace tomato tops, tilting them at a jaunty angle. Place tomatoes in an ovenproof dish and drizzle with olive oil. Place in the oven and bake for 20-30 minutes until the filling is heated through.
For the dressing mix the saved tomato juice and pulp with the mustard, vinegar, oil and basil. Whisk and pour over the cooked tomatoes before serving.
24 chopped red tomatoes
8 Chopped onions
2 Chopped cucumbers
30g/1 oz salt
1kg/2.2 lb sugar
1 tsp Cayenne pepper
2 tbsp Curry powder
3 tbsp Mustard
6 tbsp Plain flour
Blend the tomatoes, onions, cucumbers and salt in a bowl.
Cover and leave overnight.
Have jars ready for filling – best size jars for chutney are 450g/1lb
Strain off liquid from the tomato mixture and place in a large saucepan.
Add sugar and vinegar and bring to the boil allow it to boil until tender.
Add mustard and cayenne pepper followed with a light sprinkle of flour and
Curry powder Let simmer until thickened, adding a little more vinegar if needed.
Warm up the jars and fill, cover, seal and label. Fill jars within 1cm/ inch of the top.
Cover with waxed disc (wax side down,) and put cellophane disc over the top then screw on the lid.
Store in a cool dark place till ready for eating.
How does that song go “You say tomato” (tomarto) and “I say tomato” (tomayto?)
Does it really matter? If it saves lives call it what you want.