Tomato is an edible vegetable belonging to the nightshade family of the Solanaceae family. It’s commonly used as a vegetable but botanically, it’s a fruit. Tomatoes provide many health and beauty benefits as they are loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and dietary fibers, etc. However, there are some side effects of eating too many tomatoes
Side Effects of Eating Too Many Tomatoes
Some major side effects of tomatoes are as follows.
(1) May Cause Acid Reflux Or Heartburn
Tomatoes improve our digestive health.
The laxative properties of dietary fibers in tomatoes improve bowel movement, relieve constipation, and provide relief from digestive disorders such as abdominal pain, gas, bloating, and flatulence, etc.
Despite the advantage, consume tomatoes in moderation as they are high in acids ( citric acid and malic acid) and excessive consumption may increase the risk of heartburn or acid reflux.
As per a study by the University of Maryland Medical Center, tomatoes is not suitable for people suffering from GERD as it may worsen the symptoms of GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) such as chronic chest pain, dry cough, recurrent vomiting, heartburn, nausea, bitter taste, sore throat, abdominal discomfort, etc.
(2) May Cause Allergic Reactions
Histamine in tomatoes may cause allergic reactions in some people.
Tomato allergy may trigger by consuming it and as well as by getting in skin contact with it.
Some of the allergic reactions that may arise from tomatoes are hives, skin rashes, eczema, coughing, sneezing, itchy throat, swollen face, swollen tongue, and formation of red patches around the eyebrows and eyelids.Source-Pixabay.com
(3) May Cause Kidney Problems
Tomatoes are good for our kidneys.
Vitamin C and other antioxidant compounds in tomatoes protect the kidneys from free radical damage and increase their efficiency.
Dietary fibers in tomatoes remove toxins and other impurities from our system and reduce the detoxification burden from the kidneys.
The diuretic properties of tomatoes also play an important role in maintaining optimal renal health.
However, overconsuming tomatoes may increase the potassium level in our bodies.
As per a report published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a high level of potassium in the blood increases the risk of kidney problems and worsens symptoms of advanced chronic kidney disease.
Also, the oxalates in tomatoes may bind with minerals such as calcium in our body and form calcium oxalate stones ( major form of kidney stones).
(4) May Cause Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Tomatoes improve our digestive health but they contain allergens that may worsen the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Avoid tomatoes if you suffer from IBS.
(5) May Cause Diarrhea
Tomatoes improve our digestive health as they contain dietary fibers that provide relief from constipation and other digestive disorders.
But, too many dietary fibers may cause diarrhea, intestinal gas, intestinal bloating, and poor absorption of nutrients.
Also, sometimes tomatoes get contaminated by “Salmonella”, rod-shaped gram-negative bacteria that may affect the intestinal tract and cause diarrhea, dehydration, stomach cramps, and fever.
(6) Too Much Added Sodium
Tomatoes are low in sodium, and low sodium help in regulating our blood pressure level prevents water retention, and keep kidneys healthy.
But, other products made from tomatoes may have high sodium due to added salts.
A single cup of tomato soup may contain between 700 mg to 1260 mg of sodium.
Every cup of tomato sauce may contain around 220 mg of sodium.
Too much sodium is bad for our health as it causes water retention, increased risk of high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, and development of kidney stones.
While eating tomatoes and tomato products, ensure that added salt is within the recommended level.
(7) May Cause Lycopenodermia
Tomatoes contain lycopene, a powerful antioxidant that protects our cells from free radical damage and reduces the risk of various cancers. It also provides other benefits such as keeping eyes healthy, improving cognitive health, promoting cardiovascular health, and making bones stronger.
However, overeating tomatoes may increase the lycopene level in our body and increase the risk of lycopenodermia, a non-threatening condition that causes deep-orange coloration of the skin.
Eat tomatoes in moderation and if you have already turned deep-orange ( due to tomatoes), stop consuming tomatoes for a few weeks.
(8) May Cause Urinary Problems
Tomatoes are good for kidneys and help in maintaining our renal health.
They are rich in water ( about 90 percent) and have diuretic properties that help in the quick removal of toxins, impurities, and excess mineral salts from the body.
Antioxidants in tomatoes protect our kidneys from free radical damage and improve their efficiency.
However, the acidic nature of the tomatoes may irritate the bladder and may result in urinary incontinence and give rise to bladder symptoms. In some cases, it can also cause a burning sensation in the bladder.
To avoid such inconvenience, eat tomatoes in moderation.
(9) May Cause Body Aches
Vitamin C and other anti-inflammatory compounds in tomatoes provide relief from pain and inflammation caused by inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, rheumatism, rheumatoid, and gouts, etc.
Vitamin C protects our immune cells from free radical damage and strengthens immunity.
Despite its anti-inflammatory properties, eat tomatoes in moderation as they contain histamine.
In excess quantity, histamine may cause swelling and joint pains.
In addition to this, an alkaloid named “Solanine” present in the tomatoes can build up calcium levels which may get accumulated in tissues, giving rise to inflammation.
“Solanine”, an alkaloid present in tomatoes can build up calcium that gets accumulated in the tissues and cause inflammation.
Overeating tomatoes may increase the uric acid level and increase the risk of gouts.
(10) May Cause Respiratory Problems In Some Individuals
Antioxidants in tomatoes protect our respiratory system from free radical damage.
Vitamin C and other anti-inflammatory compounds in tomatoes reduce lung inflammation and protect against asthma and bronchial asthma.
However, as per a study by the United States Department of Agriculture, tomatoes may cause breathing difficulties in individuals who are allergic to them.
Tomatoes can give rise to allergies and respiratory problems as they are at high risk of mold development.
(11) May Cause Migraine
Overeating tomatoes trigger headache and increase the risk of migraine.
(12) Interfere With Immune System
Tomatoes strengthen our immune system as they contain vitamin C and other relevant compounds such as phytonutrients and polyphenols that protect our immune cells or white blood cells from free radical damage.
Vitamin C further strengthens immunity by increasing white blood cells, and with stronger immunity, we are less likely to get a cough, cold, fever, and flu, etc.
However, overeating tomatoes are bad for our immune health as lycopene in tomatoes may interfere with the functionality of the immune system and increase the risk of bacterial and fungal infections.
(13) May Cause Adverse Effect On The Prostate Gland
In excess quantity, lycopene in tomatoes may hurt the prostate gland resulting in pain, inflammation, and difficulty in passing urine.
(14) Too Many Tomatoes Are Bad For The Large Intestine
Tomatoes have a large number of seeds, and in some individuals, these seeds may accumulate in the large intestines and cause adverse effects.
These seeds can hang onto the diverticula ( bulging pouches in the colon wall) and result in diverticulitis.
(15) May Lower Blood Pressure
Tomatoes contain potassium, a natural vasodilator that relaxes blood vessels improves blood circulation, and provide relief from hypertension or high blood pressure.
However, overeating tomatoes increase the potassium level in our body.
Too much potassium may drop our blood pressure below the normal range and cause fatigue, lightheadedness, dizziness, nausea, clammy skin, depression, and blurry vision, etc.
If you take blood pressure medication, have a word with your doctor before adding tomatoes to your diet to avoid the risk of food-drug intolerance.
(16) May Lower Blood Sugar Levels
With a low glycemic index of 15, tomatoes reduce the rate at which sugar is released into the bloodstream and prevent a sudden spike in blood sugar level and help in managing diabetes.
Dietary fibers in tomatoes slow down sugar absorption by the bloodstream and regulate blood sugar levels.
Despite the advantage, eat tomatoes in moderation as overconsuming tomatoes may drop blood sugar below the healthy range and cause blurry vision, rapid heartbeat, pale skin, headache, extreme hunger, extreme sweating, dizziness, and loss of consciousness, etc.
Tomatoes may interact with diabetes medication.
If you take such medication, have a word with your doctor before eating tomatoes to ensure there is no food-drug interference.
(17) Eating Tomatoes During Pregnancy And Nursing
Tomatoes contain essential nutrients that help in maintaining pregnancy.
Vitamin C and other antioxidants in tomatoes protect the fetus from free radical damage.
Because of their low glycemic index, tomatoes reduce the risk of gestational diabetes.
The anti-inflammatory compounds in tomatoes provide relief from ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease that usually triggers during the first trimester of pregnancy or the postpartum period.
Folic acid in tomatoes prevents newborns from birth defects like spina bifida and neural tube defects.
However, excessive consumption of tomatoes may cause pregnancy complications because of their acidic content.
Both pregnant and nursing mothers should consult their doctor before eating tomatoes during pregnancy and ensure there is no risk of food-drug of intolerance.
The information contained in the post is for general purpose only and shouldn’t be considered as medical advice or as an alternative to medical advice. Although I’ve tried my best to keep the information contained in this post as accurate and updated as possible, I make no guarantee of the accurateness of the same.
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Bharat Sharma is a Delhi-based writer who loves reading and writing research-based topics revolving around health, fitness, and nutrition. His love for writing started during his teenage and continues till date. After his graduation, he worked for GE Money, and IBM, but later found his true love i.e. blogging.