New Study: People with Metabolic Syndrome Live Longer with Lycopene
What is Lycopene?
Lycopene is a naturally occurring pigment that gives fruits and vegetables a red color; it is an important carotenoid and research indicates that it may be the most important carotenoid for the skin and body. On the other hand, Lutein (the carotenoid important for vision) may be the most important carotenoid for the brain. Lycopene is found in watermelons, pink grapefruits, apricots, and pink guavas. It is found in particularly high amounts in tomatoes and is especially absorbable from tomato products such as sauce or paste. Cooking releases the Lycopene and the addition of olive oil improves its absorption. Lycopene in supplement form (if natural) is about as easy for the body to use as Lycopene found in food.
Researchers from the University of Nebraska Medical Center analyzed information from NHANES, a national survey designed to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. The survey is unique in that it combines interviews and physical examinations. The data covered 2,499 adults with metabolic syndrome.* Blood serum levels were broken down into three categories; low, medium, and high. Results showed that those with a high serum Lycopene level on average survived 4 months longer than the medium group and outlived the low group by 13 months. *The study is published online ahead of print in the journal Nutrition Research.
Jerry Hickey, R. Ph’s Take on Metabolic Syndrome
Jerry Hickey, R.Ph explains Metabolic Syndrome, “Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of dangerous conditions that raises your risk for heart disease and other health problems, such as diabetes and stroke. Cancer risk and the risk of dementia also rises in people who do not adequately address the components of metabolic syndrome. Having any three of the following five conditions fits the diagnosis of metabolic syndrome and these conditions often occur together – A large waistline, high triglyceride level, low level of HDL (the good cholesterol), High blood pressure, and high blood sugar. Your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke increases with the number of metabolic risk factors you have. The risk of having metabolic syndrome is closely linked to overweight and obesity and a lack of physical activity.”