August 25, 2016 by Living Girl Living Foods
Today’s post is in dedication to all of us happily overwhelmed with the bounty of tomatoes from this summers harvest. I would like to possibly be of aid with having an appreciation for tomatoes instead of thinking, ooof tomatoes.
Let us begin with the basics, what components make up a tomato?
When ripe and ready to eat they are red. When cut we can see there are chambers of seeds in a tomato that have given it life, just like our hearts. They might remind you of a heart, blood cell, liver, kidney, the tomato feels very full, plump, and alive.
These are all natures cues on what the health benefits of this technically a fruit are, yes, it is right in those details. Tomatoes are ideal for cardiovascular health, they are proven to aid lower total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides. In addition, they are able to help prevent unwanted clumping together (aggregation) of platelet cells in the blood – a factor that is especially important in lowering risk of heart problems like atherosclerosis.
Tomatoes are even excellent for bone health, they are rich in minerals and even have a good amount of Vitamin C and Biotin (biotin is a rather popular supplement these days for beauty health especially hair, bones, skin and nails). In addition, newer studies are finding links between tomatoes assisting with prevention of neurological diseases. The tomato kind of does look like a brain or head too!
One cup of raw tomatoes is only 32 calories and ranks extremely low on the GI scale.
Tomatoes are fantastic to use in a dip, dressing, soup, as a topping or garnish or my favorite just eat it like the fruit it is! They can add an extra sweetness without having to worry about creating too much sugar in a meal.
If you by some mistake picked your tomatoes too early, sometimes they will become ripe with time but if they were still more on the green side when picked the tomatoes usually never become ripe. No biggie! You can use these in cooked meals, juicing, or for dehydrated treats.
For some people, tomatoes cause inflammation or even discomfort related to digestion. Tomatoes are a night shade. If you have IBS usually seeded produce like tomatoes and cucumbers cause major discomfort and can not be consumed with ease.
Please do not worry, with nearly every fruit and vegetable you can get similar health benefits from another produce item. Tune in, see what feels and works best for your body and absolutely have no shame if something just happens to not work for you. For me personally tomatoes can feel too acidic and it feels like it takes extra longer to digest them but when I juice them I do not have the same feeling.
A few more specific ideas on what to do with tomatoes….
> Make Gazpacho
> Make a Creamy Cashew Tomato Soup
> Avocado Tomato Creamy Soup
> Blend with Nutritional Yeast to create a Pizza inspired flavor to your crackers, zucchini noodles, over on top of cucumbers
> Slice fairly thin and dehydrate or bake them to make little chips/snacks
>Make a large patch of marinara sauce and possibly freeze some
>Host a Taco themed party, you’ll need tomatoes for nearly every appetizer and dish!
Picking, Shopping & Storage
When shopping or picking tomatoes, look for plump, heavy tomatoes with smooth skins. They should be free of bruises, blemishes, or deep cracks, although fine cracks at the stem end of ripe tomatoes is okay. Go away and smell it, yup give it a sniff. Does it smell sweet or earthy? If not, it isn’t ready to go home with you just yet. Does the color look vibrant? Does it feel good in your hand? Or is it rock hard or feel very mushy as if it is fermented inside? Tomatoes can get moldy from the inside or outside thus feeling them is important.
Tomatoes can be stored in a cool shaded spot or if they are ripe and ready to be eaten right away keeping them in the fridge is okay. Be mindful of what you store or keep near your tomatoes. They tend to get wet and over ripen if kept in a plastic bag in the fridge. Store them in a dry area preferably with nothing else touching them.
Thank you for taking the time out of your day to stop by my site. Wishing you all the best and more! Much love ❤ and raw power 😉 keep it juicy and simple this summer!