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Four Tomatoes a Day Keep the Doctor Away

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Lycopene, an antioxidant found in tomatoes, has been shown to significantly reduce blood pressure in a small clinical trial published in American Heart Journal in January 2006

Lycopene, an antioxidant found in tomatoes, has been shown to significantly reduce blood pressure in a small clinical trial published in American Heart Journal in January 2006. Antioxidants such as lycopene are known to fight free-radical damage and reduce risk for cardiovascular disease.

Thirty-one patients with mild hypertension (high blood pressure) were given a daily dose of tomato extract for eight weeks. Researchers found that their systolic blood pressure dropped an average of 10 points, and their diastolic blood pressure levels dipped four points. Blood samples showed that the patients' oxidative stress levels also declined after eight weeks.

The supplements used in the study contained the equivalent of about four fresh tomatoes.

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