To lower your blood pressure, here is the quantity of tomatoes to eat per day

To lower your blood pressure here is the quantity of

They could lower blood pressure by a third.

We particularly like them on sunny days. In France, the peak season for tomatoes is in June, but they can be found on the stalls from May to September. These “fruiting vegetables” (there is debate!) are full of fiber, vitamins and antioxidants which protect our cells, our skin and our organs. They would also be very interesting for our heart, according to a study published in early 2024 suggesting that tomatoes have a notable effect on high blood pressure.

In the review European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, researchers from Barcelona followed 7,056 participants, 82% of whom suffered from hypertension. The participants were questioned about their daily consumption of tomatoes (or foods made from fresh tomatoes) and divided into four groups: those who ate none or very little each day, an “intermediate” group, and an “intermediate” group. upper intermediate” and a group that consumed a lot of it every day. Their blood pressure was measured throughout the follow-up. At the end of the analysis, the researchers concluded that:

► People without high blood pressure who ate the most tomatoes or tomato-based foods had a 36% lower risk of developing hypertension.

► Hypertensive people who ate the most tomatoes or tomato-based foods saw their diastolic blood pressure drop by a third compared to groups who ate none or very little. Diastolic blood pressure reflects the pressure in the arteries when the heart is at rest.

The cardioprotective effect of tomatoes is attributed to two substances: lycopene, which helps keep blood vessel walls flexible, and potassium, which helps manage the effects of sodium and control fluid levels in the body. “Lycopene – the most abundant carotenoid in tomatoes – not only reduces angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (the basic substance of drugs used to treat hypertension) but also promotes the generation of nitric oxide in the endothelium [cellules qui tapissent les vaisseaux sanguins] – helping to lower blood pressure and improve blood circulation“, explained Rosa María Lamuela-Raventós, co-author of the study.

Tomatoes are versatile foods that have the advantage of being able to be eaten raw, in salads or sandwiches, or cooked in sauces… The method of preparation was not studied by the present study. However, Dr Lamuela-Raventós suggested that it is possible that they provide more benefits when cooked. “I think future clinical studies should take into account tomato processing and home cooking techniques since the bioavailability of carotenoids and other antioxidants (such as polyphenols) increases when the tomato is cooked“.

The hypertensive effect is visible from a daily consumption of 82 g of tomatoes, or a little less than a round tomato or the equivalent of 8 cherry tomatoes per day. People who consumed 110 g had a better hypotensive effect. Other foods may also have an effect on hypertension, researchers say, including beets and artichokes, great sources of potassium, and red peppers and watermelon, which are very high in lycopene.