Vegetarian Protein & Functional Food Ingredients

Vegetarian Protein & Functional Food Ingredients

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Lycopene is a natural pigment contained in plants. It is mainly found in the mature fruits of tomato plants of the Solanaceae family. It is one of the strongest antioxidants currently found in plants in nature. It is scientifically proven that singlet oxygen and oxygen free radicals in the human body are the main culprit in invading the body's own immune system. Lycopene scavenges free radicals far more than other carotenoids and vitamin E, and its quenching singlet oxygen rate constant is 100 times that of vitamin E. Lycopene can also eliminate oxidative free radicals, such as hydrogen peroxide, nitrite, etc., by chemical reaction with other forms of reactive oxygen species, and oxidative free radicals can cause lipid peroxidation to form a variety of products. It is related to diseases such as human aging, cancer, autoimmune diseases and anemia. It can effectively prevent various diseases caused by aging and decreased immunity. Therefore, it has attracted the attention of experts from all over the world.

Related research

Lycopene, also known as ψ-carotene, is an isoprene compound and is a type of carotenoid. Because it was first isolated from tomato, it is called lycopene. In the past, people have always believed that only carotenoids with β-ionone ring and can be converted into vitamin A, such as α-carotene and β-carotene, are related to human nutrition and health, and lycopene is lacking. This structure does not have the physiological activity of vitamin A, so there is little research on this; however, lycopene has superior physiological functions, and it not only has anti-cancer and anti-cancer effects, but also prevents cardiovascular diseases and arteriosclerosis. It is of great significance for adult diseases, strengthening the body's immune system and delaying aging. It is a new functional natural pigment with a promising future.

Lycopene is the main pigment of mature tomatoes and is an oxygen-free carotenoid. In 1873 Hartsen first isolated this red crystal from Tamuscommunis L.

In 1910, Willstaller and Escher first determined the molecular formula of C40H56 and the molecular weight of 536.85 in the study of lycopene. In 1913, Schunk discovered the difference between this substance and carotene, and named it for the first time as Lycopene. The product is needle-shaped deep red crystal. In 1930, Karrer et al. proposed that lycopene is an acyclic planar polyunsaturated aliphatic hydrocarbon containing 11 conjugated double bonds and two non-conjugated double bonds in a chemical structural formula, which can form β by cyclization. carotene. Naturally occurring lycopene is all-trans, but lycopene can be converted from a trans configuration to a cis configuration by cooking, frying, etc. at high temperatures, while dried tomato or dried tomato residue There will also be a partial shift in the cis configuration. Studies have also shown that the cis isomer of lycopene differs from the trans isomer in physical and chemical properties. Compared to the trans isomer, the cis isomer of lycopene has a low melting point. The molar extinction coefficient is small, the polarity is strong, it is not easy to crystallize, it is more soluble, and it may return to the all-trans state during the placement process.


C.I. 75125; CI 75125; Lycopene Beadlet;

LYCOENE; LYCOPENE; JARCOPENE(TM); 4,4-CAROTENE; 2,6,10,14,19,23,27,31-OCTAMETHYL-DOTRIACONTA-2,6,8,10,12,14,16,18 ,20,22,24,26,30-TRIDECAENE; PSI, PSI-CAROTENE; Y,Y-CAROTENE; E 160d; (5cis,5'cis,9cis,13cis)-psi,psi-carotene

Biological Characteristics

1. With Oxidation Resistance

Lycopene quenches singlet oxygen or captures peroxidic free radicals by physical and chemical means. Singlet oxygen is a highly active oxygen free radical with cytotoxic effects. It is most sensitive to cell membranes, mitochondria, etc., and can interact with various biological macromolecules in cells, causing damage to the cell membrane system through binding with molecules. Lycopene is capable of accepting energy in different electronically excited states, absorbing light energy and transferring the energy of singlet oxygen to lycopene through a singlet-single-state energy transfer process to generate ground state oxygen molecules and triplet lycopene molecules. The triplet lycopene is regenerated by a series of optical and vibratory reactions with a solvent, and the energy is dissipated in the process; the quenching ability of carotenoids is closely related to the number of conjugated double bonds contained in the molecule. There are 11 conjugated double bonds in the lycopene molecule. One lycopene molecule can remove thousands of singlet oxygen, and its rate constant for quenching singlet oxygen is 2 times higher than that of β-carotene. In 1990, Paolo et al reported that more than 30 kinds of biological antioxidants such as carotenoids and tocopherols quenched the action of singlet oxygen, and lycopene was the strongest to quench singlet oxygen.

Lycopene can also eliminate oxidative free radicals, such as hydrogen peroxide, nitrite, etc., by chemical reaction with other forms of reactive oxygen species, and oxidative free radicals can cause lipid peroxidation to form a variety of products. It is related to diseases such as human aging, cancer, autoimmune diseases and anemia.

2. Regulate The Growth & Metabolism of Cells

Usually, there is a membrane composed of membrane proteins between the cell gaps, which has selective permeability, allows the passage of the second messenger and growth regulators, and transmits cell growth regulation signals through cell gap junction communication (GJIC) to regulate the cells. Normal proliferation and differentiation. Experiments have shown that lycopene inhibits tumor growth by inducing cell-to-cell junctions, enhancing GJIC between normal cells, controlling cell growth, and inducing cell differentiation. Japanese scholars used fluorescent dye tracer technology to study the effect of lycopene on GJIC in rat liver tissue. It was found that feeding 5 mg/kg BW lycopene every day for 5 days can significantly enhance GJIC function; The GJIC function of tumor cells is weak or absent, and the GJIC function is reduced or inhibited after cell transformation. The inhibition or destruction of GJIC function is considered to be an important mechanism of the cancer-promoting stage.

3. Regulate The Metabolism of Cholesterol

Lycopene is a low cholesterol agent that inhibits macrophage 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA, which is a rate-limiting enzyme in cholesterol biosynthesis. It was found that the addition of lycopene to the medium in which macrophages were cultured reduced cholesterol synthesis, while lycopene also increased macrophage low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor activity. The experiment also showed that the body can supplement 60mg of lycopene every day for 3 months, which can reduce the cytoplasmic LDL cholesterol concentration by 14%.

4. Health Effects

The above biological properties of lycopene determine its various health functions such as anti-oxidation, inhibition of mutation, reduction of nucleic acid damage, reduction of cardiovascular disease and prevention of cancer.

5. Prevent & Inhibit The Role of Tumors

Lycopene has the effect of preventing and inhibiting tumors, on the one hand because of its anti-oxidation effect; on the other hand, lycopene can block the genetic mutation process of tissue cells under the action of external mutagens, which is tumor-generated. One of the important mechanisms. It has been found that lycopene can affect the S phase of the cancer cell cycle of breast, lung and uterus; lycopene affects cell growth by inhibiting the G1 to S transformation phase of the cell cycle; lycopene can inhibit the oxidation of LDL cholesterol The formation of heterocyclic amines produced in the brown reaction of fried barbecue and fish, thereby effectively inhibiting the production of carcinogens and inducing tumors. Studies have shown that lycopene has certain inhibitory effects on digestive tract cancer, cervical cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer and bladder cancer.

For People

Lycopene is a kind of carotenoid, which is called "lycopene" because it was first isolated from tomato. The antioxidant capacity of lycopene is 3.2 times that of carotene, which is 100 times that of vitamin E. The human body can't make lycopene. It needs to be taken from the diet. Eat a raw tomato and only absorb 0.05 mg of lycopene.

1. Prostate disease, cancer patients;

2. Living in areas with serious environmental pollution;

3. Group of middle-aged and elderly people with low immunity;

4. Antioxidant, need to delay the aging.

Pharmacological action

Lycopene is a strong antioxidant, has a strong ability to scavenge free radicals, has a significant effect on the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, uterine cancer, etc., effectively inhibiting the spread and replication of cancer cells. It also prevents cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, improves immunity, protects cellular DNA from free radical damage, prevents cytopathic changes, mutations, and cancerous changes; contains powerful antioxidant biological substances that promote cell growth and regeneration, beauty wrinkles, Maintaining skin health and delaying aging, it is known as “plant gold” and is known as “the new darling of health products in the 21st century”.

It is the strongest antioxidant in nature, and its antioxidant effect is twice that of β-carotene and 100 times that of VE. In the elimination of the body's "source of all diseases" - free radicals, lycopene is more powerful than beta-carotene. In 2003, Time magazine listed lycopene as the "food that contributes the most to human health." Lycopene is therefore called "gold in plants." Lycopene has been found in Europe, America, and Japan. China's Hong Kong and Taiwan regions are widely accepted. It has a miraculous effect on the prevention and treatment of prostate diseases, prostate cancer, lung cancer, stomach cancer and breast cancer, and effectively inhibits the spread and replication of cancer cells. It is called "plant gold" by Western countries.

1. Prevention and inhibition of cancer: The latest research shows that taking 30 mg of lycopene per day can prevent various cancers such as prostate cancer, digestive tract cancer and bladder cancer. The human body cannot synthesize lycopene, it must be taken from the diet, and a raw tomato can only absorb 0.05 mg of lycopene. Therefore, in the treatment of prostate diseases, lycopene supplementation is essential.

2. Protection of cardiovascular: Lipoprotein oxidation in the intima of the blood vessels is a key factor in the development and progression of atherosclerosis. Lycopene plays an important role in reducing lipoprotein oxidation. According to reports, oral administration of natural lycopene can lower serum cholesterol to less than 5.20 mmol/L. Lycopene is used to prevent high cholesterol and hyperlipidemia, which can slow the development of cardiovascular disease.

3. Anti-ultraviolet radiation function: Lycopene can fight UV damage. The researchers added 28 mg of β-carotene and 2 mg of lycopene to 10 healthy people for 1-2 months. As a result, the area of erythema caused by ultraviolet light in the lycopene population was reduced.

4. Inhibition of mutagenesis: One of the important mechanisms of tumorigenesis is that tissue cells undergo gene mutations under the action of external mutagens, and lycopene can block this process and exert anticancer effects. For example, residents of the Mediterranean region use tomato sauce while frying fish and meat, which reduces the formation of mutagens such as misamines during cooking. Therefore, although local residents like to eat cancer-prone food, the incidence of cervical cancer, prostate cancer and liver cancer is very low.

5. Delay aging and enhance immunity: Lycopene can most effectively remove free radicals from the body, maintain normal metabolism of cells, and prevent aging. Lycopene is absorbed into the blood and lymph through the digestive tract mucosa in the body and distributed to the testes, adrenal glands, prostate, pancreas, breast, ovary, liver, lung, colon, skin and various mucosal tissues to promote the secretion of hormones from the glands. The human body maintains vigorous energy; removes free radicals from these organs and tissues, protects them from harm, and enhances the body's immunity. Indian scholars pointed out that lycopene can increase the number of sperm in infertile men and increase their vitality, thus treating infertility problems.

6. Lycopene can greatly improve skin allergies, eliminate dry skin and itching caused by skin allergies, making people feel relaxed and happy.

7. Lycopene is abundantly present in various mucosal tissues in the body, and long-term use can improve various discomforts caused by destruction of mucosal tissues in the body. Such as dry cough, dry eyes, mouth ulcers, protection of gastrointestinal mucosal tissue.

8. Lycopene also has a strong hangover effect. The metabolic process of alcohol in the human body is mainly a redox reaction, which generates a large amount of free radicals. Usually taking lycopene can increase the amount of alcohol; taking it before drinking, the effect of hangover is significant, which can reduce the damage of alcohol to the liver; and taking it after drunkenness can alleviate the symptoms of drunkenness such as headache and vomiting.

9. Lycopene also has a variety of physiological functions such as preventing osteoporosis, lowering blood pressure, and alleviating asthma caused by exercise.

10. Lycopene has no side effects and is very suitable for long-term care.

11. Lycopene can help prevent and improve urinary system diseases such as benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostatitis, and help improve male sperm quality and reduce the risk of infertility. A study from Harvard University in the United States found that carotenoids have a relationship with prostate cancer. In the study of carotenoids, only lycopene has a clear protective effect. Men who take the maximum dose of lycopene (6.5 mg or more per day) in their diet can reduce the risk of prostate cancer by 21% compared with the least.

12. Lycopene is abundantly present in tomatoes, and lycopene eliminates harmful chemicals that make men infertile. Therefore, drinking more tomato soup can effectively enhance male fertility.

British scientists have found that lycopene, which makes tomato soup red, may strengthen the sperm in males into super sperm. Scientists have concluded that men who drink a bowl of tomato soup a day can greatly enhance their fertility.

Five urologists from the University of Science and Technology in Portsmouth, UK, randomly selected elite men of average age 42 who were asked to drink a bowl of tomato soup every day for two weeks, during which time they collected their semen samples.

It was found that the level of lycopene in the semen can eliminate the free radicals of harmful chemicals that cause male infertility, with an increase of 7% to 12%.

Physiological function

1. Helps delay aging.

2. Helps enhance radiation resistance.

3. Helps regulate blood lipids.

4. It has an improving effect on male infertility.

5. Helps promote the healthy development of women's breasts.

6. Prevent and inhibit the role of tumors.


The United States and Japan have successively produced drugs with lycopene as the main active ingredient, and their main functions are to lower blood pressure, treat high cholesterol, high blood fat, and reduce the activity of cancer cells. The United States and France have lycopene products for preventing prostate cancer. Israel and Australia have products to prevent UV burns, protect skin, and improve skin and beauty. There are also functional products for lycopene. It is used in carotenoid compound products, mainly in combination with α-carotene, β-carotene and lutein for functional foods. These products are generally capsules or liquids.

Lycopene, as a physiologically active substance, is affected by light, heat, oxygen, pH and other factors, and is prone to oxidation and decomposition, thereby losing the physiological and functional functions and nutritional value of the human body, and even causing serious consequences such as canceration of the body. The encapsulation of lycopene by microcapsule technology can improve its usability in functional products and promote its physiological functions. Therefore, the use of microcapsule technology to embed lycopene is the core technology to be studied.

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