Tomato Juice May Lower Blood Clotting
A small study has shown that drinking tomato juice for 3 weeks may help preventheart complications in patients with type 2 diabetes. In a research letter reported in theJournal of the American Medical Association (August 18, 2004), the researchers saidthat the juice reduced "platelet aggregation"?the blood's ability to clot.
Studies had shown that tomato products have lowered the occurrence of variousheart ailments, so the researchers decided to test their theory in individuals with type 2diabetes. The study included 14 men and 6 women aged 43 to 82 years old with type 2diabetes but with no history of clotting problems. None of the participants were takingaspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or other medications that may influenceclotting. While maintaining a normal diet, the participants were randomly assigned todrink 250 mL of tomato juice or a tomato-flavored beverage daily for 3 weeks.
At the beginning and end of the study, blood samples were taken and analyzed. Theresults showed that platelet aggregation was significantly lower at the end of the trialfor the participants drinking tomato juice. The placebo group showed no major differencein platelet aggregation. Until larger studies determine why the juice had thiseffect, the researchers cautioned that drinking small amounts of tomato juice may befine for diabetics, but they should not overdo it, because the juice contains some sugarand is acidic.