Health benefits of corn has been argued over for years. However, today there are no doubt potential risks that are not yet fully understood. Organic corn nutrition is impressive! Corn is rich in fiber, carbohydrates, antioxidants, and many vitamins and minerals.
Corn (or maize) is one of the most common cereal grains in the world. Sweet corn and popcorn are popularly eaten varieties, however, refined corn crops are also widely consumed, often as ingredients in foods. These include tortilla chips, cornmeal, polenta, corn syrup, tortillas, corn oil, and corn flour.
Corn is the most commonly produced feed grain in America, with much of the harvest providing the central energy component in livestock feed. The United States accounts for around 40% of the world exports, according to ERS.
Corn Nutrition Facts
1 large ear of corn on the cob contains around:
- 123 calories
- 27 grams of carbohydrates
- 2 grams’ fat
- 5 grams’ protein
- 4 grams’ fiber
- 1 milligram Vitamin B6 (7% DV)
- 1-milligram thiamine (7% DV)
- 3 milligrams vitamin C (5% DV)
- 3 milligrams magnesium (5% DV)
- 5 milligrams folate (5% DV)
- 158 milligrams potassium (5% DV)
- 2 milligrams phosphorus (5% DV)
Health Benefits of Corn
Even though corn is typically grouped together with other grains and often used in similar ways, it is actually not a “grain” and does not contain gluten at all.
You may ask: What’ s the problem with gluten?
Consuming gluten is associated with various negative symptoms, including digestive problems like cramping, constipation, bloating, diarrhea, skin issues, and fatigue.
So, since gluten is tricky for many people – even people who don’t have a confirmed gluten allergy or celiac disease – corn and corn flour makes a great stand-in for wheat or other foods that contain gluten.
- Corn is a Great Part of Many Traditional Diets Related to Longevity and Overall Health
Nowadays, levels of hypertension, insulin resistance, and obesity are high among the population in North America, which have veered away from their standard, traditional diets and started adopting a typical “western diet.” Variations in dietary patterns of these people toward eating more high-calorie foods, refined grain flour, sweetened beverages, and sugar have resulted in way more health risks than their traditional diet based primarily on legumes, corn, vegetables, and rice, according to a 2007 statement published in the Journal of Medicinal Food.
Experts believe that a return to traditional diets can help decrease these disease problems due to the better balance of calories and valuable nutrients. They concluded that staple crops like legumes and corn legumes have antihypertension, antioxidant, and antidiabetic potential. Corn and legumes also provide some protective phenolic phytochemicals which are beneficial for cardiovascular health, reversing hypertension as a natural treatment for controlling blood sugar and high blood pressure levels.
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- It’s a High-fiber Food
It provides about 4.5 grams of fiber per cup of kernels. Plus, it has a high percentage of insoluble-to-soluble fiber, therefore, it has numerous beneficial effects on our digestive system. Moreover, high-fiber foods are beneficial for preventing cancer of the digestive organs, as well as colon cancer.
- Slowly Processed Source of Carbohydrates
Corn is rich in starch that is a form of complex carbohydrate which provides steady energy levels. Different from refined carbohydrates that aren’t feeling for long and don’t provide enough energy, foods high in fiber and starch are beneficial for normalizing blood sugar levels due to the ability of fiber to slow down the rate at which sugar (glucose) is released into the bloodstream.
- Good Source of Antioxidants
Corn is also rich in antioxidants. The most popular corn type – the yellow corn, is predominantly a good source of carotenoid antioxidants, especially zeaxanthin and lutein (also found in carrots, squash, and some other deeply colored vegetables and fruits). Other corn types supply antioxidants such as hydroxybenzoic acid and protocatechuic acid, anthocyanins, beta-carotene, ferulic acid, and caffeic acid.
Corn kernels are rich in carotenoid antioxidants, which are proven to support the immune system and protect the skin and eyes against oxidative stress. Check out this amazing citrus fruit also great for your eye health: http://yourhealthtube.com/need-sunglasses-just-glass-lime-juice/
Individual Concerns and Possible Side Effects
Consuming corn is generally considered safe. Though, eating corn may be of concern for some people, mostly in populations which depend on it as a dietary staple.
Your Health Tubers recommend you to be careful with corn that is genetically modified. This is because corn is No.1 grown produce in the Unites States and now the 2nd most genetically modified ingredient on the planet (second to soy). Around 88% of all corn grown in the United States every year is genetically modified.
Furthermore, if you have a very sensitive digestive system you should be careful with corn consumption. Although it is technically not a grain and is gluten-free, it’s possible for corn to still intensify your digestive system and cause stomachache, particularly if you suffer from some other common food allergy, sensitivities to IBS, FODMAP foods, or leaky gut syndrome.
In fact, corn allergies are pretty rare, however, if you suffer from any issues when eating corn (changes in stool, bloating, gas or diarrhea, for instance) then try to avoid corn products as much as possible.
Many traditional diets in the U.S. include corn and corn products. In the past few years, traditional corn had a really bad reputation. Today, corn nutrition has been proven to be truly beneficial, especially for people who lead standard diets, as well as vegetarians, and vegans. An antioxidant activity that helps protect our bodies from heart disease and cancer, is actually boosted when corn is cooked. Sweet corn is loaded with zeaxanthin and lutein – 2 phytochemicals that promote eye health. A midsize ear also delivers a beneficial 3-gram dose of fiber.