Lycopene is part of the family of pigments called carotenoids, which are natural compounds that create the colors of fruits and vegetables. For example, beta carotene is the orange pigment in carrots while lycopene give tomatoes their deep red color. As with essential amino acids, they are not produced by the human body. Lycopene is considered the most powerful antioxidant in the carotenoid family and, with vitamins C and E, protect the body from the free radicals that degrade many organs during the aging process called reactive oxygen species (ROS). The scientific term for the common tomato is lycopersicon lycopersicum, which mean “wolf peach and is the source for the nutrients name lycopene.

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