A new study to be published in The Journal of Endocrinology & Metabolism concluded that a tomato-rich diet may help protect at-risk postmenopausal women from breast cancer. In the longitudinal cross- over study a group of 70 postmenopausal women were examined for the effects of both tomato and soy-rich diets. Women ate tomato products containing at least 25 milligrams of lycopene daily for 10 weeks. For a separate 10 week period, they ate at least 40 grams of soy protein daily. For two weeks before each test period the women were asked to refrain from eating both tomatoes and soy products.
When they followed the tomato-rich diet the level of adiponectin, a hormone involved in regulating blood sugar and fat levels, climbed 9 percent and this was slightly stronger in women who had a lower body mass index. It is known that breast cancer risk increase in postmenopausal women as their body mass index climbs, and these findings found a diet high in tomatoes had a positive effect on the level of hormones that play a role in regulating fat and sugar. Researchers said “The findings demonstrate the importance of obesity prevention…..Consuming a diet rich in tomatoes had a larger impact on hormone levels in women who maintained a healthy weight.” On the other hand, the soy diet was linked to a reduction in adiponectin levels in the women in the study.