How tomatoes beat wrinkles: Fruit is high in antioxidant

Herbs and Helpers

The fruit has an antioxidant called lycopene that protects against UV rays

Study says it isn’t a substitute for sunblock but offers line of defence

German researchers said it could lead to people taking supplements

Eating plenty of tomatoes could stave off wrinkles- and even skin cancer, say scientists.

The fruit is rich in an antioxidant called lycopene that helps shield the body from harmful UV radiation.

A study says it isn’t a substitute for sunblock but offers another significant line of defence.

The German researchers said it could lead to people taking supplements containing the chemical for health- or cosmetic- purposes.

Tomatoes are rich in an antioxidant called lycopene that helps shield the body from harmful UV radiation

They also found another pigment known as lutein- abundant in spinach and kale – attained similar results.

They compared the scalp of 65 people who were divided into two groups- one given a supplement called TNC( tomato nutrient complex) or a placebo and the other lutein or the dummy treatment.

At the beginning and end of each 12 -week treatment phase their scalp was exposed to two types of ultraviolet( UV) lighting, UVA1 and UVA/ B in a process known as irradiation- with biopsies taken 24 hours later.

These showed those who received no lycopene or lutein had increased expres of certain’ indicator genes’ links between wrinkly scalp and inflammation- two common side effects of sunlight damage.

In contrast both therapies significantly reduced the expres of these genes.

The findings follow a study in 2012 which concluded women who eat a diet rich in tomatoes had increased skin protection, reduced redness and less DNA damage from ultraviolet rays.

While you shouldn’t give up on sun screen doctors have said this juicy fruit should be part of your overall diet for better seeming skin.

The German analyze received eating tomatoes is not substitute for sunblock but offers another significant line of defence

Professor Jean Krutmann, of Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine in Dusseldorf, said:’ There is growing evidence that dietary intervention can protect human scalp against detrimental effects caused by solar ultraviolet( UV) radiation.

‘To the best of our knowledge we show here for the first time tomato nutrient complex( TNC) as well as lutein do not only protect healthy human scalp against UVB/ A, but also against long wave UVA1 radioactivity and oral photo-protection of healthy human scalp can be demonstrated.’

He said’ oral supplementation with lycopene-rich TNC and with lutein may be efficient’ in blocking sun injury- helping to prevent wrinkles and scalp cancer.

Prof Krutmann said:’ Our analyze further supports the concept dietary strategies are beneficial for human skin in general and nutritional supplements of the exact kind used in this study are very effective in providing protection against UVA radiation-induced skin injury in particular.’

In the study those who received no lycopene had an increased’ indicator genes’ links between wrinkly scalp and inflammation

Previous analyses into lycopene have generally assessed its ability to reduce UV-induced erythema, which is the scalp reddening that is a sign of sunlight damage.

One such analyze received people taking a lycopene mixture had 33 per cent more protection against sunburn- equivalent to that given to a sunscreen with a sunlight protection factor( SPF) of 1.3.

This latest study looks at gene expres as a method of demonstrating sun damage caused to human skin.

Matthew Gass, of the British Association of Dermatologists, said:’ Eating tomatoes and kale isn’t a substitute for sunscreen or other forms of sun protection such as protective attire and shade.

‘However this study shows these lycopene and lutein supplements could be an extra tool to protect against sunlight damage.’

The study is published in the British Journal of Dermatology.

Source: Daily Mail

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