If you liked fruits and vegetables that are red in color, then you will most likely be receiving a healthy supply of lycopene. This is the natural chemical that gives the red color on the foods known as carotenoids which is one of the number of pigments.
As it plays a pivotal role in giving red color, lycopene is mostly found in tomatoes and other products related to this food. Besides that, watermelons, pink guavas, apricots and pink grapefruits are rich with lycopene as well. If you take a normal cup of tomato juice, you will be receiving about 23mg of lycopene but you should not process it using heat because it will detriment the amount of this mineral.
While lycopene can be sourced from a wide range of natural foods, it is often used as part of the formula for products sold be dietary supplement companies. As such, you will most likely find lycopene as part of a certain supplement and is very common among multivitamins.
What is it used for?
Lycopene is very beneficial for health where it keeps the heart working efficiently. As such, lycopene plays an important role in preventing cardiovascular diseases as well as several types of cancer. Besides that, lycopene helps to enhance the respiratory system and in improving diabetic patients.
Deficiency and symptoms
A person who is lacking in lycopene will naturally be at high risk of heart problems. This could lead to hardening of arteries that will lead to major health conditions that could be fatal if not monitored. As lycopene has very strong antioxidant properties, lacking in this mineral will expose you to the negative effects brought about by free radicals.
When you do not have enough carotenoids in your body, you will experience shortness of breath and even at risk of asthma which can lead to complications and serious health conditions if not detected early.
You can get sufficient dosage of lycopene if you take enough fruits and vegetables in your daily diet. However, you can get lycopene from health supplements as well. The recommended dosage is 15mg per day if you are sourcing it from dietary supplements.