Lycopene in the Prevention of Cardiovascular Diseases

Int J Mol Sci. 2022 Feb 10;23(4):1957. doi: 10.3390/ijms23041957.


Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of human mortality worldwide. Oxidative stress and inflammation are pathophysiological processes involved in the development of CVD. That is why bioactive food ingredients, including lycopene, are so important in their prevention, which seems to be a compound increasingly promoted in the diet of people with cardiovascular problems. Lycopene present in tomatoes and tomato products is responsible not only for their red color but also for health-promoting properties. It is characterized by a high antioxidant potential, the highest among carotenoid pigments. Mainly for this reason, epidemiological studies show a number of favorable properties between the consumption of lycopene in the diet and a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease. While there is also some controversy in research into its protective effects on the cardiovascular system, growing evidence supports its beneficial role for the heart, endothelium, blood vessels, and health. The mechanisms of action of lycopene are now being discovered and may explain some of the contradictions observed in the literature. This review aims to present the current knowledge in recent years on the preventive role of lycopene cardiovascular disorders.

Keywords: antioxidant; atherosclerosis; cardiovascular diseases; inflammation; lycopene; oxidative stress; prevention.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Heart / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Lycopene / pharmacology*
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Solanum lycopersicum / chemistry


  • Antioxidants
  • Lycopene