Source: Mother Earth News
Most people know by now that a tomato isn’t a vegetable, it’s a fruit and a super one at that! The reason that tomatoes are considered so important for a healthy diet is due to their high content of lycopene. This is a carotene that can help the body in a variety of ways. It is absorbed into the tissues and muscles to help prevent certain types of cancers. The high content of lycopene is just one of the reasons to add tomatoes raw and cooked to your diet. Obviously they are a staple of the healthy salad, but adding them to pastas, brown rice, and quinoa is another way to get your daily serving. The tomato itself belongs to the nightshade family, and is grown in bushes all over the world. It’s better to buy organic tomatoes since the pesticides in non-organic can get easily absorbed into the thin skin of the surface of the tomato. There are many varieties of tomatoes including green ones, heirloom, and roma tomatoes. Little grape tomatoes are even a healthy snack dipped in hummus or lite ranch dip to tide you over between meals. Kids love them too so they are a great and easy addition to any lunch box.