Posted on 03 November 2008 by

Purple Tomatoes May Fight Cancer

By Michelle Fabio

Scientists in England have created a tomato that they say may be even more healthy than the traditional red variety.

By injecting genes from the snapdragon flower, including the all-important antioxidant pigment called anthocyanin, researchers at the John Innes Centre, Norwich have created purple tomatoes that research suggests provide more health benefits than red tomatoes.

Along with giving snapdragons, blackberries, and cranberries their rich colors, anthocyanin is also believed to inhibit cancer cell growth, help eyesight, and fight cardiovascular, age-related degenerative diseases, diabetes, and obesity.

In the experiments by a team from John Innes Centre in Norwich, some mice specially bred to be vulernable to cancer were fed purple tomatoes as part of their regular diets; these mice lived much longer than those who ate only red tomatoes.

Tests on humans will come next, although Dr. Paul Kroon of the Food Research Institute in Norwich warns that there’s no reason to assume similar positive results will be achieved.

But if purple tomatoes are shown to have positive extra health benefits in humans, would you mix these genetically engineered purple tomatoes in with your regular tomatoes?

Source: Purple tomato ‘may boost health’ from BBC News

6 Responses to “Purple Tomatoes May Fight Cancer”

  1. Shibaguyz Says:

    As much as we love love love tomatoes, we would absolutely not add these to our garden. First, we would rely on other foods containing anthocyanin to supplement our diet. Apples, blueberries, blood oranges, cherries and black berries all have anthocyanin. If a varied diet is followed, genetically engineered strains of plants are not necessary at all to gain proper nutrients. Second, what is the anthocyanin content in heirloom varieties of purple tomatoes?

    Vary your diet with naturally occurring anthocyanin-rich foods and it won’t be necessary to rely on GE foods polluting our food chain any more than they already are.

  2. michelle Says:

    I have to agree; there are plenty of other (healthy and delicious) ways to get anthocyanin in your diet without messing with nature, although if people happen to be allergic to some of those and aren’t to anthocyanin-added tomatoes, perhaps that would be useful.

    Thanks for commenting!

    Come on TC readers, speak up! Yes or no to genetically modified purple tomatoes?

  3. Bleeding Espresso » what else have i been writing? Says:

    […] Purple Tomatoes May Fight Cancer at “Scientists in England have createda  tomato they say may be even more healthy than the traditional red variety.” Read more… […]

  4. 10 More Intriguing Genetically Modified Fruits & Veggies | WebEcoist | Green Living Says:

    […] via: Tomato Casual and The Great […]

  5. lauren Says:

    what other genes are activated by this manipulation? let’s see 10 years of clinical trials proving these fruits aren’t cancer causing before they are touted as “cancer fighting.

  6. 10 (More!) Eccentric Genetically Modified Fruits & Veggies | Say "No" to GMOs Says:

    […] via: Tomato Casual and The Great […]

Leave a Reply

Recent Comments