Study Finds People Get More Lycopene When Cooking Tomatoes

There’s nothing like cutting into a fresh tomato and popping a slice into your mouth. It’s juicy, flavorful and healthy, especially when they are Tasti-Lees. But as the fall and winter seasons approach, many people may be looking for a warmer way to enjoy their tomatoes. This usually means they want to include it in soups, sauces, and other comforting foods. And that’s good news because there’s a new study that suggests cooking tomatoes could provide more health benefits.

Lycopene in Cooked Tomatoes

Harvard University released a study in which researchers found that cooked tomatoes may contain more antioxidants than uncooked ones. This is surprising because it’s believed that raw fruits and vegetables are better for you than cooked ones, but tomatoes seem to be an exception.

It’s all about the lycopene in these results. When tomatoes are cooked, people are more likely to eat more of them, which ends up giving them more of that powerful antioxidant. Tomato paste is an example of cooked tomatoes that get compressed to bring people more lycopene.

Lycopene is an antioxidant that has been linked to lower risks of many types of cancer. The study’s findings, by Dr. Edward Giovannucci and Harvard University colleagues, showed that men who consumed tomatoes and tomato products were less likely to suffer from prostate cancer. Many studies also find that lycopene lowers the risk of heart attacks and stroke.

Lycopene for a Healthy Body

Now that you know about the healthful benefits of cooked tomatoes, add them to your grocery list this week! There are many recipes online using tomatoes, so you’ll have plenty of options to incorporate them into some cozy fall and winter meals.

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Posted in Health, Tomato Facts

Tomatoes Reduce the Risk of Heart Attack and Stroke

tomatoes-handHeart attacks and stroke claim the lives of people all around the world. High salt and fat intake are major contributors to both conditions, which is why many people have been trying to change their diets to increase longevity.

How the Mediterranean Diet Helps

One diet that many people are turning to is the Mediterranean diet. This is because there has been a lot of research that finds people who eat a Mediterranean diet have a lower risk of heart attack and stroke. In fact, Medical News Today reported this finding from a study conducted in the UK at the University of Cambridge with the support of Cambridge University Hospitals National Health Service Foundation Trust.

The Mediterranean diet consists of a lot of tomatoes, and other fruits and vegetables. It also focuses on whole grains, legumes and nuts. What’s limited in this diet is red meat, fish and chicken. Healthy fats such as olive oil replaces unhealthy fats such as butter. With the amazing benefits of the Mediterranean diet, many people can save themselves from heart disease and stroke.

The Link – Lycopene

While many researchers will admit they don’t know exactly why the Mediterranean diet lowers the risk of heart disease and stroke, many believe that a contributing factor is the lycopene in tomatoes. Lycopene is an antioxidant that has a high concentration in tomatoes. It’s more powerful than other antioxidants, including vitamin E.

Medical News Today recently conducted a study in which participants took a lycopene supplement. The study’s results showed that those taking the supplement had a 53% improved blood vessel response to acetylcholine, which is a molecule that affects cardiovascular health.

More Tasti-Lee Tomatoes Please!

The benefits of lycopene in tomatoes cannot be denied! If you don’t eat tomatoes very often, you may want to bring more of them into your diet. And if you’ll be doing that, you’ll want to make sure they’re the best tasting tomatoes around … Tasti-Lee! Learn more about us on our website:

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How to Keep Tomatoes Fresher Longer

You’ve likely dealt with this situation a few times. You buy tomatoes, bring them home, and in a couple days they are already showing their age. You either need to eat or use them that day, or you’ll have to toss them in the trash. The reason for faster aging of tomatoes has to do with the ones you’ve picked and how you’re storing them. Understanding how to keep the tomatoes fresher for longer will help.

Pick Fresher Tomatoes

When searching for tomatoes that will last, look for those that do not have any blemishes or dents in them. These usually have entry points where moisture and bacteria can get inside and start to ripen and rot the tomato. Take your time as you’re picking tomatoes. You can find some great ones in the bunch just by picking a few up to inspect them.

Store them Top Side Down

Always store your tomatoes on a counter or paper lined flat surface. The tomatoes should be faced top-side, or stem-side, down. The stem has cracks and holes that can allow for moisture and bacteria to invade. Just like the bruises and dents, the tomato’s life can be shorter because of it. To keep that from happening, all you have to do is block that entry by storing them top side down.

You can usually get about two more days by following these tips on how to pick and store your tomatoes. This leaves you plenty of time to put them into a salad, in a recipe, or eat them just as they are because they are good that way too.

Strict Quality Control

Our Tasti-Lee tomatoes are subject to strict quality control procedures. The only tomatoes that are placed in the punnets are those that pass inspection, meaning those that are ripe (but not overripe) and don’t have any bruises, dents or other forms of damage on them. Then the punnets are transported to their stores.

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Posted in Kitchen Tips

Are Red Tomatoes Healthier Than Yellow?

When you’re browsing the produce aisle at your local grocery store, you’ve probably seen two types of tomatoes: red and yellow. There are occasionally other colors as well, but for our purposes, we’ll just stick with red and yellow. Most people simply think red tomatoes taste different from yellow ones, and they don’t think about it again. What these people often don’t think about is that they differ in nutritional value too.

The Differences Between Red and Yellow Tomatoes

The following facts about red and yellow tomatoes will help you see which type is healthier.

  • Red and yellow tomatoes have about the same amount of calories with red having 38 and yellow 32 (if you consider a medium-large size tomato).
  • Red has 10% fiber, while yellow only has 6%.
  • Yellow tomatoes have twice the amount of iron at 6%, with red only having 3%.
  • Yellow tomatoes have 8% phosphorus. Red ones only have 5%.
  • There’s more potassium in yellow ones, but not too much more.
  • There’s much more sodium in yellow tomatoes. Red ones only have 11 mg, and yellow ones have 49 mg.
  • Yellow tomatoes have more zinc though, twice as much as the red kind.
  • You’ll get more vitamin C and A from the red tomatoes, but more vitamin B and folate from yellow ones.
  • Red tomatoes have the cancer fighting lycopene. Unfortunately, yellow tomatoes do not.

Which is Healthier?

When trying to determine if red tomatoes are healthier than yellow ones, there’s really no right answer. Red tomatoes have some nutrients that yellow ones don’t, and yellow ones have some that red ones do not. What that means is eat your tomatoes no matter what color they are because you’ll end up benefiting either way!

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Posted in Tomato Facts

The Many Preparations of Tomatoes

Tomatoes are highly versatile. You can use them every day if you get creative. Try these ways to use your tomatoes, so you can get the nutrition you need to protect yourself from illness and disease, and ward of the effects of aging.

  • Tomato Juice – Tomato juice is perfect for any time of the day. When cold, it’s perfect on a hot summer day. Add a salty snack like peanuts or pretzels with your tomato juice for a great afternoon snack.
  • Tomato Soup – There’s nothing better when you’re under the weather. Heat up some tomato soup for the nutrients you need to make you feel better. Pair it with a grilled cheese sandwich for a classic American lunch.
  • Tomato Salad – Basil, mozzarella cheese, and fresh tomato slices with balsamic vinegar and olive oil gives you a satisfying snack or lunch. It’s perfect for a summer day when you need something cool to eat.
  • Tomato Pie – A pie made out of tomatoes is delicious. It’s like a pizza, but different because you don’t have all the cheese and sauce in it. With a tomato pie, you focus on the vegetables. It’s perfect for dinner as a nutritious main dish.
  • Tomato Sandwich – Tomato sandwiches are popular during the summer months when tomatoes are in season. Simply slice up some tomatoes, place in between two slices of bread and add some condiments like mayo. You can also add lettuce or basil.
  • Tomato Sauce – Tomato sauce is perfect for pasta and pizza. Make some with ripe tomatoes from your garden or the store, and you’ll taste difference from the jarred variety.

Purchase some Tasti-Lee tomatoes today and start incorporating tomatoes into your diet. You’ll feel better and enjoy your new foods with delicious tomatoes.

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Posted in Recipes

The Best Ways to Make a Tomato Sandwich

tasti-lee-red-tomatoes-in a box-with-basil-and-panini-sandwich-039Tomato sandwiches are some people’s favorite summertime lunch. There’s nothing better than juicy, fresh, ripe tomato slices in between two slices of bread. There are countless ways to make a tomato sandwich, so try some of these the next time you need a delicious lunch.

Tomato Sandwich with Mayo and Basil

  • Chop basil, and then mix it in with mayo. You may want to add more flavor by adding lemon juice, garlic, olive oil and salt.
  • Spread the mayo on two slices of bread. Slice a tomato and place it on one of the slices. Place the other side on top, and you’re ready to eat.

Marinated Tomato Sandwich

  • Mix olive oil and vinegar in a bowl and place sliced tomatoes inside of it. You only need to marinate them for 10 minutes.
  • While they are marinating, mix mayonnaise, parmesan cheese, and parsley together. Spread it on one slice of bread.
  • Put the marinated tomatoes on the other slice of bread and top it with the one with the mayo.
  • Additional tip: Try putting it under the broil to toast the bread and tomatoes. It makes the tomato flavor come out so much more.

Tomato Grilled Cheese Sandwich

  • Slice tomatoes and place them on one slice of bread. Take another slice of bread and top with your favorite cheese. Put the two slices of bread together and butter each side.
  • Put the sandwich in a non-stick pan and toast each side of it over medium heat. The cheese should melt as the bread is toasting.
  • Remove your sandwich from the pan and enjoy!

Before you give these sandwiches a try, don’t forget to stock up on Tasti-Lee tomatoes, delicious and nutritious! Visit our website at for more Tasti-Lee info.

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Fruit Flies, Don’t Bother Me … or My Tomatoes

Fruit flies love tomatoes. They can pop up overnight just because you have some ripe tomatoes sitting on the counter. Before you toss your tomatoes into the fridge, which will cause them to lose their flavor, try out these ways to get rid of those pesky little bugs.

Get Rid of the Culprit

It’s the tomatoes that invited the fruit flies over for a party, so you’ll have to kick them out of your kitchen. Eat them, give them away to neighbors, or freeze them. The reason the fruit flies arrived, is because the tomatoes are ready to be used, so you might as well use them.

Clean Up

Fruit flies will not vacate your premises if they can cling onto something else. Get rid of dishrags, mops, and sponges. They all attract flies. If they are new, just throw them in the washer or dishwasher. Clean, dry cleaning supplies are no fun for fruit flies.
Scrub down the countertops in your kitchen. Any residue from the tomatoes and other foods will keep the fruit flies happy. Don’t forget your garbage disposal. Disinfect it with all-purpose cleaner or vinegar to keep that from becoming the fruit flies’ hiding place.

Humanely Trap the Flies

If the flies don’t leave your kitchen after you’ve cleaned it, you may need to trap them. Luckily, this process is quite simple. All you need to do is place a piece of ripe fruit at the bottom of a jar. Put a lid on the jar and poke small holes on the top. The fruit flies will crawl into the jar and won’t be able to find their way out. You can then take the jar outside and let them find another home.

Voilà! Now you’re kitchen is fruit-fly-free!

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How to Store Cut Tomatoes

Tomatoes are great for sandwiches, especially if they’re Tasti-Lee tomatoes. Unfortunately, all you need is a slice or two to make it delicious. That leaves behind almost a whole tomato that you may not want to use at that meal. But storing it for next time can be tricky. Here are the best ways to store cut tomatoes.

Cut Side Down

You should always store a cut tomato cut side down because it keeps the fruit from drying out and avoids spoiling. This can create somewhat of a mess because some of the juices will run down, so make sure you have something underneath it. Many people use a paper plate, wrap it with saran wrap, or put it into a plastic bag.

Leave It Out or Put It in the Fridge?

The best way to store uncut tomatoes is on the counter, cut side down. When tomatoes are cut, many people toss them into the fridge. The only problem with this is that it can lose some, or all of its flavor. Storing the tomato on the counter is the best way to preserve the taste, but it can lead to bacteria forming. It is always a good idea to use the tomato within a few hours if you do keep it out of the fridge to avoid any health risk from the bacteria. If you keep your house air-conditioned, a cut tomato on the counter may last longer, but keep in mind that a cut tomato will go bad twice as fast as a whole tomato on a counter.

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Enjoying Tasti-Lee Tomatoes

Tasti-Lee tomatoes are vine-ripened, which means they are ripe when they are sent to the grocery store, unlike many other tomatoes, which are usually picked unripe for easier shipping, making them close to flavorless. The only downside to a Tasti-Lee tomato is that it may not last as long because it is already ripe when you buy it so just keep this in mind when you decide to slice one up for a sandwich!

Keep up with the latest Tasti-Lee and tomato news on our Facebook Page!

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