In scientific terms, tomatoes are classified as a fruit, not a vegetable. But as they appear low on the glycemic index we often refer to them as a vegetable.But that still doesn’t answer the question “Are tomatoes Paleo?”
Well in this article I aim to provide you with some reasoning why you should include them in your diet. Even though they are part of the nightshade family of which potatoes are also a member.
First, of you need to realize that tomatoes are good for us. They provide you with an excellent source of Vitamins C, A and lycopene. Also, contain a good source of different B Vitamins.
Lycopene is especially important as it is a strong anti-oxidant. This we need to help maintain our immune system. As well as helping to reduce inflammation in the body it also helps to prevent fat oxidation in the blood. This is vital as it stops cholesterol in your body oxidizing. It is this form of cholesterol that will latch on to artery walls. In turn, causing plaque to form which in turn leads to inflammation.
Although they contain plenty of minerals, vitamins, and nutrients our body needs. As a member of the nightshade family, they can cause complications in some people. Some people find eating this particular food leads to digestive problems. If you notice any problems after eating such food then remove from your diet.
But if you find you don’t suffer from any issues then including them into a Paleo diet is acceptable. So I in answer to the question posed above “Are Tomatoes Paleo?” I would say yes.
Of course, I would also suggest that you eat in moderation as they contain a protein compound known as lectin. This can also be found in foods that aren’t Paleo approved such legumes and dairy products.
Unfortunately, unlike other proteins enjoyed as part of the Paleo diet, we find these ones difficult to digest. As a result, can then lead to some health problems. Yet research has shown that some lectins can prove harmful to us. But it is dependent on the kind of lectin consumed. Also how much is consumed and how the food containing the lectin has been prepared.
If you would still like to include tomatoes in your diet then there are a couple of ways to cut back on the lectins you consume.
The first way is to remove the peel and seeds from this particular food. The reason for doing this is because this is where most of the lectins can be found.
The quickest way to remove the skin of a tomato is to place it in hot water for a few minutes. Then once you’ve removed the peel, cut the tomatoes in half and scoop out the seeds with a spoon.
Even though you’ve removed the skin and seeds you can still make a delicious tomato sauce with them. So in answer to your question “Is tomato sauce Paleo?” I would say yes if you’ve carried out the above.
Another way to reduce the amount of lectins in your tomatoes is by using the fermentation process. Through this process, you are helping good bacteria to break down many of the foods damaging substances. Again it is best to remove the peel and the seeds before you begin the fermentation process.
As well as helping to reduce the levels of lectins in the tomatoes. It helps to make them into a great probiotic food. Something your stomach will love.
So why not give these methods a try so you can continue to include tomatoes in your diet.