The tomato, a fruit-vegetable that is key to Japanese well-being

13 Jul 2016 in Food Culture

The Japanese are extremely health-conscious. Discover how important tomatoes are to daily well-being in Japan.

Régime minceur avec les tomates

The Japanese are extremely health-conscious. Vegetables make up a large part of their diet and they pay very close attention to production methods, which are increasingly organic. Tomatoes are their choice vegetable of the summer. Their ribbed textures and generous shapes, the many different varieties available, and the refreshment they bring – which is just one of their many benefits – make them the star of the summer.

Tomatoes in Japan

While it is not clear whether they should be considered fruits or vegetables, one thing is certain: their plump shape is pleasing to the eye and their delicate taste is pleasing to the palate. Of the Solanaceae genus, dubbed pomma dora – “the love apple” – in Italy, the tomato has recently been liberated from its traditional red and round shape, both in Japan and worldwide, adding many new colours to its wardrobe. Tomatoes now come in many colourful variations – yellow, orange, green, and black, with monikers such as Pineapple, Green Zebra, and Black Krim – all of which are excellent for our health.

Though the tomato was considered poisonous until the 16th century, due to its resemblance to mandrakes, it not only graces our stalls, but promises excellent health benefits. For instance, have you heard of lycopene, the carotenoid that gives the tomato its vibrant colour? Our body transforms it into Vitamin A, an essential antioxidant. To fully absorb the benefits of tomatoes, you can eat them a drizzle of olive oil or drink their juice – the perfect refreshment on hot summer days.

Hoshino Resorts Utoco exterior

Relaxing spa moment

Hoshino Resorts UTOCO Auberge and Spa, located in Kochi Prefecture, southwest of Japan’s main island Honshu, is well-aware of the benefits of tomatoes, especially on the skin and has responded to popular demand – especially from their female guests – by creating a program centered on tomatoes. To get the most out of its health benefits, they have prepared an almost entirely tomato-centric offer you can enjoy as a couple during your stay.

Tomato ice cream flavor

On the evening of your arrival, your dinner menu is built around tomatoes, and your breakfast the next day includes a cherry tomato salad. Deliciously refreshing tomato juice is served an appetizer before lunch. You will receive a tomato seed oil face and body spa treatment and enjoy tomato syrup poured over crushed ice in the afternoon. The benefits of this experience will turn you into a tomato aficionado!

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