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You Say Tomato; I Say Purple Tomato

CNN recently reported that Oregon State University is in the final steps of perfecting a purple tomato. The red and green version seemed to be working out just fine, so why purple?

Well, purple is the new green (or in this case, red). We are constantly encouraged to eat salads comprised of more purplish lettuce. We are told to eat more eggplant, blueberry, blackberry, pomegranate and now Açai. When it comes to food, purple is definitely in.

To become a tomato expert (purple and red),

The purple pigment found in these the ever popular purple foods is called: anthocyanins or more simply put, they contain antioxidants which are believed to help prevent cancer and heart disease. The tomato is already high in Vitamin C and Lycopene along with other great nutrients such as potassium. When available to us, the purple tomato could quite possibly become the world's next super food. Can you imagine purple spaghetti sauce? Yum.

Fit's Tip: While we wait a few years for the purple tomato to be released to the public here are a few tips for getting the most out of your red tomatoes:

  • When you're at the store, try and pick the most red tomatoes as they contain the most antioxidants.
  • Go organic if possible, especially if you will be eating the skins as non-organic tomatoes can be covered with pesticides.
  • When cooking tomatoes, try using some olive oil as it will help you absorb more antioxidants.
  • Unlike other fruits and veggies, canning is not known to destroy the nutrients in tomatoes, so stock up on some canned tomatoes.
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