New research shows tomato nutrient can help prevent heart disease

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After decades of researching why people with Mediterranean diets suffer fewer heart attacks and strokes, clinical researchers have pinpointed how lycopene, found in the skin of tomatoes, could reduce risks.

Howard Sesso, associate epidemiologist, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and associate professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, USA says:

 


“People who consume a Mediterranean diet rich in tomatoes and olive oil have long seemed to have lower rates of heart disease. What we now know is that it is lycopene, found in the skin of tomatoes, that is responsible for some of this benefit. Unfortunately, most people are unlikely to eat the numbers of tomatoes that you need each day to achieve the level of lycopene needed to improve cardiovascular health – that’s why a lactolycopene supplement may be key.”

 


Sesso suggests that an optimal amount of lycopene is around 7mg per day – equivalent to 1kg of tomatoes. Recent research into heart health found that only 13% of people in the UK say they eat a Mediterranean diet.

 

 

Peter Kirkpatrick, consultant and honorary lecturer in Neurosurgery, Addenbrooke’s Hospital, University of Cambridge, UK scientific advisor to CamNutra the manufacturers of lactolycopene which is being sold under the brand Ateronon, says:


“We are now engaged in a programme to prove that the benefits of raised blood lycopene can best be provided by the unique lactolycopene formulation.  Ateronon is the first supplement to deliver lycopene to the body in a consistent, reliable way, and to have scientifically proven and validated benefits.”

World expert, Venket Rao, professor emeritus, Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Toronto, Canada, a speaker at the British Cardiovascular Society conference says: “Finding ways to prevent and manage cardiovascular disease is important for improving quality of life and overall life expectancy. 

“Although several risk factors influence the incidence of heart disease, in recent years oxidative stress induced by lifestyle factors such as smoking, poor diet, exercise and excessive alcohol consumption, has been recognised as playing an important role. Recently there has been a great deal of interest in using natural anti-oxidants to do this. Lycopene is one of the most powerful natural anti-oxidants available, but the problem has been getting it reliably absorbed by the body. Lactolycopene is unique in offering an effective option for the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease and plays a complementary role to traditional therapeutic drugs. There is now convincing evidence to suggest the consumption of Lycopene and resultant high level of Lycopene in your blood is effective in reducing the incidence of heart disease by an impressive 25-30%.”