Lycopene May Protect Against Prostate Cancer

A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition investigated the effects of lycopene-rich red tomatoes, lycopene-free yellow tomatoes and purified lycopene on prostate cancer cells. Thirty healthy men aged 50 to 70 years old were enrolled and were randomly assigned to 2 groups after a two week washout period. Each group consumed yellow and red tomato paste (200 grams a day) for one week separated by a two week washout period. Then the first group was supplemented with purified lycopene while the other group received a placebo. The yellow tomato provided 0 mg of lycopene. Blood serum was collected before and after the interventions and was incubated with prostate cancer cells. Red tomato paste and purified lycopene increased circulating lycopene concentration. In conclusion, lycopene was found to affect gene expression, thereby, indicating lycopene may reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

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