Until the 1800s, tomatoes were thought to be poisonous. Today they are known to contain more Vitamin C than oranges and to contain lycopene (the red pigment) which, some research suggests, may have twice the power of the well-known antioxidant beta carotene.

As a general rule, food is better eaten raw rather than cooked. But in the case of tomatoes, raw and cooked are both better! Want the vitamin C benefits? Then eat them raw. If you want the antioxidant benefits then you need your tomatoes cooked or at least heated. And yes, tomatoes are a rare case in which (for antioxidant reasons) saucing and canning also improves them.

One last thing – much of the good is in the red. So eat your tomatoes very ripe and very red.

While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.

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