Sun dried tomatoes are the product of the sun-drying process where ripe tomatoes spend 4-10 days out in the sun. With this, the fruit is preserved, keeping its nutrients intact for long periods of time.
The nutritional component of sun dried tomatoes is not that different from fresh tomatoes. In fact, the sun drying process enhances sun dried tomatoes nutrition. Just like fresh tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes are good sources of antioxidants, lycopene, and vitamin C. The process does not affect the health benefits of tomatoes. Most of its nutritional value is retained, except for its water content.
Sun dried tomatoes’ nutrition is composed of a good percentage of potassium, iron and vitamins A, B and C. During the process, water-soluble vitamins become concentrated, while other nutrients increase in content. In sun drying, the content of lycopene increases.
A full cup of sun dried tomatoes is composed of 23% of Vitamin C and 16% of Vitamin A of the daily recommended intake. Vitamin C is needed for the immune system of the body while Vitamin A has various substances that improve vision and the digestive system. For adults, it is more difficult for the body to absorb vitamins, compared to children. It is better to consume more of these vitamins in order to benefit from them.
In general, tomatoes are known for lycopene, an antioxidant that aids digestion and decreases the body’s risk for prostate cancer. While fresh tomatoes are good sources of lycopene, sun dried tomatoes doubles its lycopene content. Because the water content dissolved during the process, it also gave room for the lycopene content to increase. Sun dried tomatoes’ nutrition is actually more valuable than that of fresh tomatoes.
Whether sun dried or fresh, tomatoes carry nutrients and vitamins that keep the body healthy and prevent harmful diseases. It just so happens that sun dried tomatoes are still good even after a long period of time.