Are canned tomatoes healthier than fresh tomatoes? Fresh and ripe tomatoes usually contain more essential ingredients than canned vegetables. From April to October, when plants are in season, you should, therefore, choose fresh tomatoes.
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In winter, however, it’s worth switching to canned tomatoes for dishes with cooked vegetables. For the production of canned tomatoes, fruits are used that have been allowed to ripen for a long time.
In addition to the selection of varieties, this circumstance usually leads to high lycopene content.
The secondary plant substance lycopene, which is responsible for the red color of the fruits, is considered healthy. In the body, the substance can act as a sunscreen and slightly brighten the mood.
Lycopene is also said to have anti-inflammatory and preventive effects against some types of cancer.
Besides, canned tomatoes also contain plenty of vitamin C and folic acid – but the vitamin content of fresh vegetables is much higher than that of canned tomatoes.
Nutrient content per 100 grams of tomatoes:
- Vitamin C: 20 mg (fresh), 15 mg (canned)
- Folic acid: 20 µg (fresh), 5 µg (canned)
- Vitamin E: 0.8 mg (fresh), 0.6 mg (canned)
- Beta-carotene: 590 µg (fresh), 485 µg (canned)
The amount of healthy ingredients that the human body can absorb also depends on the method of preparation.
Raw tomatoes contain the most significant amount of vitamin C, and mixing them with oil ensures that vitamin E is particularly well dissolved from the fruit.
By heating, on the other hand, the lycopene is released from the cell walls and can be utilized.
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