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A Daily Glass of Tomato Juice May Help With Weight Loss, Oxidative Markers

A recent study suggests that drinking a glass of tomato juice daily could have significant effects on waist circumference, cholesterol levels, and markers of inflammation in healthy young women. The results are attributed to the high levels of lycopene found in the tomato juice.

Participants in the study included 30 Taiwanese women between the ages of 20 and 30. They were instructed to drink 280 mL of tomato juice containing 32.5 mg of lycopene daily for eight weeks. Twenty-five women completed the study.

At the conclusion of the study, the women had an average reduction in waist circumference of .62 inches and an average 1.1 pound reduction in body weight. This is despite not changing their dietary or exercise habits during the study period. Reductions in cholesterol were also observed.

In addition, the women had a 22% decrease in levels of monocyte chemoattractant protein (NCP-1), which is a marker for inflammation, and a 25% increase in adiponectin levels. Adiponectin is a hormone released by fat cells that helps regulate insulin sensitivity and energy levels.

Researchers from China Medical University in Taiwan conducted the study. It was published online ahead of print on December 12, 2014, in the journal Nutrition.

Lycopene is an antioxidant compound that gives fruits and vegetables a red color. Previous studies have shown that lycopene may have a positive effect on heart health, bone health, and skin health.

If you want to increase lycopene levels you may want to consider taking a lycopene supplement, or increasing your consumption of red-pigmented foods such as tomatoes, peppers and papayas. Certain diets, such as the Mediterranean diet, are also high in lycopene.

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