Tomatoes are one of the most consumed fruits. Tomatoes have a sweet and sour flavor, are cooling and act on the stomach and liver. They clear heat in the body and detoxify the blood. Even though tomatoes are acidic, after digestion they alkalize the blood. However, because they can upset the calcium balance due to their solanine content, they are best avoided by people with osteoporosis and arthritis and children.
According to ‘macrobiotics’ tomatoes should never be used as they are acidic and with long term use are weakening to the gastrointestinal tract. According to Dr. Bernard Jensen, author of the ‘Foods That Heal’ book, the acids of green tomatoes are especially detrimental to the kidneys. Therefore, it is recommended to cut and discard the green parts of tomatoes before their consumption.
In Ayurvedic tradition, are problematic because they have a postdigestive effect, meaning that they stay sour after being metabolized. This means that the extended or excessive use of tomatoes irritates the gut, to which any person with an ulcer or an already sensitive stomach will attest. The peel and seeds are also aggravating for the nervous-system. Tomatoes can also acerbate skin conditions and allergies. Tomatoes are a more balanced food when cooked with warming spices such as cumin and turmeric (see the recipe ‘ Dr Verena’s Home Made Tomato Sauce” below).
When eaten in moderation and in season, vine-ripe tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A and B complex, as well as potassium and phosphorus. Tomatoes are rich in sugar (fructose, glucose and sucrose) and contain lycopene, flavonoids, and other phytochemicals with anticancer properties.
Wood, R. (1999). The new whole food encyclopedia. United States: Penguin Group
Dr Verena’s Home Made Tomato Sauce
(serves 2 people)
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil or butter
- 1 onion
- 1/2 teaspoon (tsp) of salt
- 2 bay leaves
- pinch of chili flakes
- 6 chopped tomatoes (green parts removed)
- 1/4 tsp of cumin powder
- 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder
- Celtic sea salt, pepper to taste
- Heat olive oil or butter on low/medium heat
- Add chopped onions, roast for 2 minutes, add salt and bay leave and roast until translucent (approx. 5 minutes)
- Add chili flakes, stir and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes
- Add finely chopped tomatoes, stir and put lid on pot
- Cook for 10 minutes on medium heat
- Add 1 cup of water and continue to cook for 20 minutes
- Add cumin and turmeric powder, stir and cook for another 10 minutes
- Add salt and pepper, stir, switch of heat and let it stand for 10 more minutes.
- Note: You can add more water of necessary