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Aussie rancher hails health benefits of Cambridge tomato pill Ateronon

A cattle farmer in Australia caused a stir on one of Australia's top TV news bulletins after he claimed the so called "tomato pill', Ateronon, had given him a new lease of life after major heart surgery left him in pain.

Tom McCauley, 61, told Channel 7 interviewer, Dr Andrew Rochford, his health was still failing after major heart surgery, and when he was offered a heart by-pass, he decided to search the internet for a potential alternative.

He came across a study conducted by Cambridge University on patients with cardiovascular disease, which found that Ateronon – better known for treating prostate problems – improved flexibility of the arteries by more than 50%.

After taking Ateronon for only a month, Tom found that his chest pains had disappeared and he told viewers: "I feel as fit now as I did 10 years ago. A tomato a day is keeping the doctor away."

The study Tom referred to was published in the scientific journal PLOS One in 2014, by researchers at Cambridge and Addenbrooke's.

Dr Joseph Cheriyan, consultant clinical pharmacologist and physician at the hospital and a lecturer at the university, said: "There's a wealth of research that suggests the Mediterranean diet – which includes lycopene found in tomatoes and other fruit as a component – is good for our cardiovascular health."

The researchers found that 7mg of oral lactolycopene supplementation (Ateronon) improved and normalised endothelial function in the patients.

The high levels of lycopene in the blood delivered by Ateronon were credited with the improved widening of the blood vessels by over a half (53%) compared to baseline in those taking the pill after correction for those who took the placebo.

"Constriction of the blood vessels is one of the key factors that can lead to heart attack and stroke, so any reversing of 'hardening of the arteries' is important for improving our health. We've shown quite clearly that lactolycopene in Ateronon improves the function of blood vessels in cardiovascular disease patients," added Dr Cheriyan.

Adam Cleevely, CEO of Cambridge based CamNutra, producers of Ateronon said: "Ateronon has only just been introduced to Australia, so it's very pleasing to see it's already making the headlines over there too."

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