By Ellen J. Kamhi, Ph. D. with Dorie Greenblatt
The tomato is a fruit (not a vegetable) of the vine-like tomato plant, which is part of the nightshade family. The ancient Incas first domesticated it. Thomas Jefferson was a proponent of eating tomatoes and helped to increase its popularity in the United States. In the 1900's the French called the tomato le pomme d'armour, or 'love apple'. Science is now discovering that the tomato may hold some powerful ammunition in our war against degenerative diseases, due to the presence of an amazingly potent antioxidant called Lycopene.
Lycopene is a naturally occurring pigment found in many fruits and vegetables, and is responsible for their red coloring. It is present in pink grapefruits, watermelon and other red fruits, but found at its highest levels and in its most bioavailable form in the tomato. Lycopene is a carotenoid from the same family as beta-carotene, but possesses a unique chemical structure. This structure has been identified as the reason for Lycopene's ability to quench free radicals. Free radicals are responsible for a host of degenerative ailments ranging from arteriosclerosis and artery blockage to cataracts and cancer. A healthy person's body has a natural system to deactivate free radicals. However, many factors can increase the amount of free radicals the body has to cope with. These include stress, pollution, irradiation, smoking and advancing age. Increased protection from free radical damage has to be obtained from food and nutritional supplements. The best defense is to eat a healthy, organic, vegetable based diet, exercise daily, and incorporate stress reduction techniques into your daily schedule. Taking supplements with additional Lycopene is a wise adjunctive "insurance policy". Recent findings from prestigious medical authorities such as Harvard Medical School and the International Journal of Cancer have shown that Lycopene enhances our body's natural ability to neutralize free radicals, thereby protecting us from the onset of various disorders. Lycopene is naturally found in the body, in higher concentrations than any other carotenoid compound, with the highest concentrations focused in specific organs, including the testis, adrenal glands, liver, ovaries, fat cells and kidneys.
Nature's Answer's Alcohol-Free Lycopene liquid extract is derived from non-GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) natural tomatoes and features 5 mg. of Lycopene per serving, the suggested recommended dose. It is manufactured at Nature's Answer's FDA registered and pharmaceutically licensed facilities. Lycopene is absorbed most efficiently along with fat; that's why Nature's Answer® provides Lycopene in a base of Medium Chain Triglycerides and tocopherol (Vitamin E) - all sources representing nutritious forms of fat.