Lycopene is a fat-soluble pigment responsible for red pigmentation. It is known for its biological, physical and chemical properties, especially those related to its antioxidant activity.
This carotene is known for its biological, physical and chemical properties, especially those regarding its antioxidant role.
As it is fat-soluble, lycopene is more easily absorbed when it is combined with dietary fats.
The body uses some types of carotenes to make vitamin A, however, lycopene is not one of those carotenes. Nevertheless, lycopene has a prominent antioxidant activity, as well as a cardioprotective effect due to the reduction of total-cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol, and it is also effective in reducing homocysteine levels and blood pressure.
Its strong antioxidant action is equally important in protecting our DNA, by eliminating free radical originated due to oxidative stress, and by stimulating the apoptosis (death) of cancer cells, predominantly in prostate cancer.
In summary, it is important to remember that the benefits of lycopene vary between individuals, due to factors such as dietary fats intake, the use of probiotics (present, for example, in yogurts, which reduce lycopene absorption), genetic variations in metabolism, the synergistic effect on antioxidant activity that might occur between two components, amongst others.