Do you think an unripe tomato is poisonous?
The green portions of the tomato crop are hazardous and should be avoided, according to a well-known cautionary tale. Is this, however, the case? The poisonous alkaloid solanine is present in unripe tomatoes that are still entirely green. Its natural heat-resistant toxin is present in all solanaceous crops, including potatoes. Only 25 milligrams of solanine is enough to cause pain: a headache, stomach ache, and intestinal discomfort. Upon intake, you may have visual problems. More over 400 milligrams would be deadly. Green tomatoes, on the other hand, have a solanine level of up to 32 milligrams per 100 grams. It would take several kilograms of green tomatoes to be lethally damaged.
Since we normally make salads with red tomatoes, we do not have to worry about solanine. Because the tomato becomes red as it ripens, and the deadly green nearly totally vanishes. Certain green specks are sometimes seen that still contain solanine. You can cut these away if it makes you feel better, but they won’t do you much harm.