Scientists have alerted the world that tomatoes can slow down stomach cancer.
This was one of the findings of a new study published in the ‘Journal of Cellular Physiology.’ The popular Mediterranean fruit inhibits cell growth when eaten in its entirety, researchers had found out.
This could pave the way for studies focusing on preventing the condition as well as using diet to support conventional treatments, they said. Such results contradict previous research suggesting that just one chemical, lycopene, has cancer-fighting benefits.
Study author, Daniela Barone, from the Oncology Research Center of Mercogliano, Italy, said: ‘Tomatoes’ effects seem not related to specific components, such as lycopene, but rather suggest that tomatoes should be considered in their entirety. The researchers analysed whole tomato extracts for their ability to tackle various features of gastric cancer.
Extracts were taken from the common varieties, San Marzano and Corbarino.
The results revealed that both extracts affected cancer cells’ ability to spread and develop as well as leading to their death. Such findings not only have implications for prevention, but may also pave the way for new treatments, the researchers said. Another study author, Prof. Antonio Giordano, said: “Our results prompt further assessment of the potential use of specific nutrients not only in the cancer prevention setting, but also as a supportive strategy along with conventional therapies.”
Lycopene is a naturally occurring chemical that gives fruits and vegetables a red colour. Stomach cancer, or gastric cancer, is fairly uncommon