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Can Excessive Tomato Consumption Have Any Side Effects?

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Tomatoes are naturally high in acid, and excess consumption can cause acid reflux. Its excessive lycopene content may cause allergic reactions like itching, rashes and burning sensation in the eyes. It can interfere with regular activities of our immune system and slow it down. As a result, the body loses its ability to protect itself from several microbial diseases.

Curejoy Expert Dipti Mothay Explains:

Tomato is a pulpy nutritious fruit commonly eaten as a vegetable with incredible phyto-chemical properties. Botanically, tomato belongs to Solanaceae or nightshade family of common vegetables, which also includes chili peppers, potato, eggplant, etc. Its scientific name is Solanum lycopersicum.

Tomato Nutrition Facts

The water content of tomatoes is around 95%. The other 5% consists mainly carbohydrates and fiber. The main plant compound in tomatoes is lycopene. They also contain beta-carotene, naringenin and chlorogenic acid. One medium sized tomato (123 grams) contains only 22 calories. Tomato is low in Sodium, and very low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. It is also a good source of Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol), Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Potassium and Manganese.

Tomato Side Effects & Safety

Consumption of tomatoes has been linked to many health benefits for your heart, skin and building resistance against infectious diseases, but they can cause dietary complications for some people. People with food intolerance to tomatoes may have difficulty digesting large quantities of tomato, some of the health complications caused by tomatoes are listed below:

Acid Reflux

Tomatoes are naturally high in acid, which can cause acid reflux. Acid reflux can occur when you eat high-acid foods, such as tomatoes, as well as fatty or spicy foods. If you regularly experience heartburn more than two times a week for several weeks — you may have GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), which requires medical attention (MedlinePlus: Gastroesophageal Reflux ) .

Allergic Reactions

Excessive lycopene can give us allergic reactions too. Some of the symptoms of lycopene allergy include itching, rashes, hives, chest constriction, swollen lips, burning sensation in eyes, and so on (Lycopene safety- Mayo Clinic).

Imbalanced Immunity

The major element found in fresh raw tomato is the carotenoid pigment ‘lycopene’. It is a chemical compound that is supposed to keep cancer at bay. But excessive intake of this phytochemical can interfere with the regular activities of our immune system and slow it down. As a result, our body loses its ability to protect itself from several common microbial (bacterial, fungal and viral) diseases. At the same time it also becomes incapable of repairing the existing physical damages (1).

Tomato Intake

2 to 3 cups of tomatoes are recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. While you can eat only tomatoes to meet your vegetable requirement, the USDA recommends that red and orange vegetables, such as tomatoes, make up only 4 to 6 cups of your weekly vegetable intake in order to provide variety and the required amounts of essential nutrients.

References:

1. Tomatoes, tomato-based products, lycopene, and cancer: review of the epidemiologic literature- Giovannucci E. 1999

CureJoy Editorial

The CureJoy Editorial team digs up credible information from multiple sources, both academic and experiential, to stitch a holistic health perspective on topics that pique our readers' interest.

CureJoy Editorial

The CureJoy Editorial team digs up credible information from multiple sources, both academic and experiential, to stitch a holistic health perspective on topics that pique our readers' interest.

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Lorraine Rea
Lorraine Rea 5pts

Is that why people in the med Live long lives

Norman David
Norman David 5pts

Everything should eat it in moderation including acidic tomato. But not tomato alone, you can eat it with shopao, cheeseburger.

Milana Belsky
Milana Belsky 5pts

SERIOUSLY, there are sooooo many actual problematic processed foods you could target, the things you choose are healthy, and all you do is deter people from eating them...alternative agenda?!

Marie Savu
Marie Savu 5pts

tomatoes =fruit... eat in modernation?

Raine Kenny
Raine Kenny 5pts

Oh. I eat them like fruit\U0001f62f Love them\U0001f60a

Connie Flower
Connie Flower 5pts

Really? Wow I love cherry tomatoes, I eat it like I eat grapes.