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Boost Your Metabolism Series- Tomato

We are providing a 10-part series on our TOP 10 FOODS TO BOOST YOUR METABOLISM.  This is the 7th post. To learn more about the Boost Your Metabolism series, please click here!


The secret to boosting your metabolism is FEEDING your body what it needs.  

You must eat the right foods, in the right quantities, to get your metabolism working for you, rather than against you. The amount of water, fat, fiber, protein, carbohydrates, sodium, cholesterol, EFAs (Essential Fatty Acids), and vitamins & minerals you consume on a daily basis will either increase your metabolism or your waistline.



Photo by Maplessinseattle

The debate may go on whether the tasty tomato is a fruit or a vegetable, but one thing is for sure, the tomato is a super food for your body’s metabolism.  Tomatoes are naturally low in calories and high in fiber, both good for satisfying your appetite and maintaining a healthy weight. 

Tomatoes are rich in antioxidants that fight the bad free radicals that are unfortunately present during nutrient metabolism or from the environment (such as pollution and UV rays).  The good news is that a good intake of antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables, including high amounts of tomatoes,  counteract these free radicals. 

The antioxidant most prevalent  in the tomato is lycopene, which is found in large quantities in the outer skin of the tomato, but also found inside too.  Research has found that intake of these antioxidants help protect your body’s cells from damage and decrease risk of heart disease and cancer, especially prostate cancer in men.

Caution: Watch the calories when adding tomato sauce to spaghetti.The calories  in a plate full of pasta can quickly add up. 

Other tomato-based foods that can be dangerous are jars of salsa, cans of diced tomatoes, tomato juice, and tomato soup – all are loaded with sodium.  Be sure to read the labels of these tomatoes for “no added salt” or “low sodium”. 

Incorporating tomatoes into your everyday routine is essential to optimize your metabolism and your health.  Here are a few ideas and recipes to try.

Add tomatoes to all of your meals!

  • Add a slice on every sandwich and in your wrap
  • Top your salad with baby tomatoes, diced tomatoes, or wedges
  • Add chopped tomatoes to eggs and omelets
  • Tomatoes are a nice addition to cottage cheese
  • Add to pizzas, pastas, stir-fry, and kebabs 


Baked Parmesan Tomatoes

From EatingWell:  August/September 2006

A sprinkle of Parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil transform tomatoes into the perfect side dish. Or try sandwiching them between slices of your favorite whole-wheat country bread.

4 servings | Active Time: 5 minutes | Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 4 tomatoes, halved horizontally
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil


  1. Preheat oven to 450° F.
  2. Place tomatoes cut-side up on a baking sheet. Top with Parmesan, oregano, salt and pepper. Drizzle with oil and bake until the tomatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.


Per serving : 91 Calories; 6 g Fat; 2 g Sat; 4 g Mono; 4 mg Cholesterol; 6 g Carbohydrates; 3 g Protein; 2 g Fiber; 375 mg Sodium; 363 mg Potassium

Caprese Salad

From EatingWell:  July/August 2008

Summer-ripe tomatoes and fresh mozzarella need only a sprinkling of fresh herbs, salt and pepper to shine in this simple summer salad.

4 servings, about 1 1/4 cups each | Active Time: 15 minutes | Total Time: 15 minutes


  • 2 medium red tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 2 medium yellow tomatoes, cut into wedges
  • 3/4 cup diced fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Gently toss tomatoes, mozzarella, parsley, basil and salt together in a large bowl. Season with pepper.


Per serving : 88 Calories; 5 g Fat; 3 g Sat; 0 g Mono; 17 mg Cholesterol; 6 g Carbohydrates; 5 g Protein; 2 g Fiber; 187 mg Sodium; 444 mg Potassium 

Halibut with tomato basil salsa

By Mayo Clinic staff

Dietitian’s tip: Halibut — in addition to cod, flounder and perch — is a lean fish, having less than 2.5 percent fat by weight. For a variation to this recipe, grill the halibut and spoon the tomato basil salsa over each fillet to serve.

By Mayo Clinic staff

Serves 4


2 tomatoes, diced
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 halibut fillets, each 4 ounces


Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

In a small bowl, combine the tomato, basil, oregano and garlic. Add the olive oil and mix well.

Arrange the halibut fillets in the baking pan. Spoon the tomato mixture over the fish. Place in the oven and bake until the fish is opaque throughout when tested with the tip of a knife, about 10 to 15 minutes.

Transfer to individual plates and serve immediately.

Nutritional Analysis

(per serving)

Serving size: 1 fillet
Calories 160 Cholesterol 36 mg
Protein 24 g Sodium 65 mg
Carbohydrate 3 g Fiber 1 g
Total fat 5 g Potassium 672 mg
Saturated fat 1 g Calcium 66 mg
Monounsaturated fat 3 g    


Avocado Bruschetta

Photo by: Howard L. Puckett

  • YIELD: Makes 3 dozen
  • COURSE: Appetizers, Hors d’Oeuvres


  • 2 avocados, cubed
  • 2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 36 French baguette slices
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


Combine first 10 ingredients in a bowl; toss gently to combine. Cover and chill 2 hours.

Combine 3 tablespoons olive oil, garlic, and salt. Place bread slices on a baking sheet, and brush evenly with olive oil mixture. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes or until toasted; cool.

Top each toast evenly with avocado mixture. Sprinkle with cilantro before serving.

Coastal Living JANUARY 2005



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