Do tomatoes give you BO?


Tomatoes are actually a fruit, but are commonly termed a vegetable because they’re used for savoury rather than sweet cooking. Tomatoes are easily grown at home. They should never be refrigerated as this kills their flavour and messes up their skin. Tomato is a key flavour in manifold recipes. Tomatoes’ reputed aphrodisiac properties led to their being named pommes d’amour – love apples – in French.

In an article recently published in the journal, Medical Hypotheses, the Irish biochemist, J.C.M. Stewart, suggested that lycopene, the anti-oxidant present in tomatoes, caused BO, which is known to medicine as bromidrosis and can reduce a person’s opportunities for social interaction. After a struggle that saw the editor, Bruce Charlton, depart the publication in a manner he viewed as being sacked, the articles in Medical Hypotheses are now peer-reviewed.

Lycopene is a form of terpene, the chemical compound that gives hops, essential oils and cannabis a unique smell and is also responsible for the red colour of tomatoes. Terpenes enhance the potency of cannabis and organic pot growers spray terpene-rich essential oils on their crop to counter plant disease and infestation. Metabolic engineering is being used to increase the incidence of terpenes in tomatoes to improve the taste, smell and pest-resistance of tomatoes and other fruits. Terpenes are beneficial to human health in a number of ways.

Terpenes are also present in orange peel, papaya, red peppers and watermelon. In his article, Stewart stated the underarm odour is usually caused by terpenes that arise from dietary sources, and tomatoes are the principal source of dietary terpenes.

Lycopene is a mighty anti-oxidant that suppresses free radicals that can damage DNA. A diet rich in lycopene could help lessen the prospect of prostate and other cancers, reduce the risk of strokes by 55 percent and benefit bone health.

In the direst cases, the axillary apocrine glands that excrete terpene can be excised, and you have probably encountered individuals who would have benefited from such an operation.

About the Author Timothy Chilman

Timothy Chilman used to work in IT. Once, in Sydney, he was turned down for a job because he was “too flamboyant” (“Someone who wears green tartan suspenders to a job interview probably isn’t going to fit in here”). Timothy then became an English teacher. University students in Bangkok complained that he was “too enthusiastic” and company students in Prague complained that he was “too theatrical.”

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