When Skin + Bright Red is a Good Thing!

TOMATO SUN SCREEN SUN PROTECTION LYCOPENEIt used to be that when I thought of tomatoes and skin I generally thought of the unattractive pink hue that my skin turns after a small amount of sun exposure.

However a German study found that women who ate 40 grams (about 1/3 cup) of tomato paste daily for at least 10 weeks were more protected from the sun than those who didn’t. They reduced their risk of UV-induced erythema (redness) by 40% compared to the women who did not consume any tomato products.

The secret to this juicy little fruit’s protection power comes from the lycopene that gives the tomato its rich red color. Lycopene, the best free radical “scavenger” in the carotene family.

Unfortunately when it comes to unprocessed tomatoes very little lycopene is bioavailable so if you’re looking for UV-protecting effects, choose things like sun-dried tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, or tomato juice.

In a repeat of the German study reported in the Journal of British Dermatology in 2010 which found similar results, the study authors concluded that the lycopene-rich tomato paste provides protection against acute and potentially longer-term aspects of UV-induced photo damage.

Obviously eating tomatoes is not a substitute for seeking shade in the middle of the day wearing a hat, UV clothing, sunglasses and frequent and thorough application of sunscreen, but it’s tasty addition to your sun protection arsenal.

So you can tuck into burgers with extra ketchup, spaghetti bolognese and a round of bloody marys guilt free!


50+UPF Sunny Sleevez


About sunnysleevez

I'm a freckly red head, originally from London now living in LA with 2 pale children. Frankly with our coloring we have no business being such an outdoorsy family and living in southern California. I grew up in a time when factor 8 sun milk was considered the best protection available to combat the hot rays of a holiday in southern Spain, that lead to 3rd degree burns and the rest of the vacation spent in the shade of our apartment. As a family we love to be outside, going to the beach, camping, swimming & hiking. We can't completely avoid the sun (nor should we) but taking sensible measures to avoid unnecessary UV damage is a priority. How do we do that? By staying in the shade in the middle of the day, wearing sun protective clothing (that's why I created Sunny Sleevez), a broad brimmed hat, UV rated sunglasses, using chemical-free broad spectrum sun screen on exposed areas & eating a healthy diet with as few chemicals as possible & lots of antioxidants.
This entry was posted in Food & Drink, Health, Skin and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to When Skin + Bright Red is a Good Thing!

  1. Good to read. Love anything tomatoey. Not sure if thats’s a word. 🙂

  2. kingdomprincess says:

    Good to know I am definitely a tomato fan, I love to grill them though and I wonder how much of the natural nutrients I’m losing cooking them on a grill? I also wanted to thank you for subscribing to my blog and encourage you in yours. God’s blessings to you and yours.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s