Which of these plants does not contain lycopene?
Lycopene is a bright red carotenoid hydrocarbon found in tomatoes and other red fruits and vegetables, such as red carrots, watermelons, gac melons, and papayas, but it is not present in strawberries or cherries.
Lycopene is a natural pigment that gives some vegetables and fruits their red color. It is an antioxidant (a substance that protects against cell damage). Tomatoes provide about 80% of the lycopene in the diet.
In plants, algae, and other photosynthetic organisms, lycopene is an intermediate in the biosynthesis of many carotenoids, including beta-carotene, which is responsible for yellow, orange, or red pigmentation, photosynthesis, and photoprotection.
Like all carotenoids, lycopene is a tetraterpene. It is insoluble in water. Eleven conjugated double bonds give lycopene its deep red color. Owing to the strong color, lycopene is useful as a food coloring and is approved for use in the USA, Australia and New Zealand and the European Union.
Fruits and vegetables that are high in lycopene include autumn olive, gac, tomatoes, watermelon, pink grapefruit, pink guava, papaya, seabuckthorn, wolfberry (goji, a berry relative of tomato), and rosehip. Ketchup is a common dietary source of lycopene.
A 2017 review concluded that tomato products and lycopene supplementation had small positive effects on cardiovascular risk factors, such as elevated blood lipids and blood pressure.