Lycopene is a pigment that gives fruits and vegetables their red-orange color. Lycopene is classified as a carotenoid, naturally occurring orange-red to yellow pigment in plants which also assist in the process of photosynthesis. In animals, carotenes are converted to Vitamin A in the liver. Common fruits and vegetables containing lycopene are carrots, tomatoes, bell peppers, red cabbage, grapefruit and watermelon.
Recent studies have shown that lycopene is a great source of antioxidants which minimizes damage from free radicals and is believed to reduce risk of illness such as cancer, macular degeneration (loss of vision) and cardiovascular disease. Due to its classification as a phytonutrient, lycopene is also believed to have photo-protective qualities that block UV light.
Due to its antioxidant properties and many health benefits, lycopene is also now a popular skincare ingredient. Lycopene allows for skin growth and repair as it protects from free radicals, anti-aging and UV radiation. It is also believed to improve skin texture.
Some natural and organic products with lycopene as an ingredient: