This delicious treat, corn, has got a unique taste — a feeling of earthiness. It is one of the best nourishing snacks around, especially when roasted on flames or boiled; its taste is just so great all the time. The setting on the actual cob is pearl-like as if it was carefully wrapped with pearls; so attractive. Corns can be cooked or roasted on open fires and eaten to have a fantastic experience.
This plant can be traced to the wild grass called teosinte. The first maizes that grew did not have the uniformity of the modern corn. The kernels were placed apart and the stalks were shorter. This plant was popular for its nutrition, its ability to be stored, and its ability to grow and thrive in various climatic conditions. The corn spread through trade routes, from America to the rest of the world. In fact, by 700 B.C, corn was a well-eaten snack by many Red Indians and Canadians.
The availability of the many varieties of corn seen today is as a result of an enhancement in its DNA. This delicious grain is also used for textile dyes. It’s got various attractively beautiful colors — white, purple and even black.
Corn, you would agree, is a source of food for many people and livestock. It is, in fact, one of the most harvested grains. Asides being eaten directly, corn is used in many different ways like in cornflakes, tortillas, corn flour and corn syrup. It’s a diverse grain, really, and that just adds to its beauty. It is low in calories and contains almost 3.4 grams of protein per 100 grams of serving. It is also rich in vitamins and minerals and is a rich source of energy.
So of the many amazing benefits of corn, let’s discuss these few.
Health Benefits of Corn
A Reliable Source of Energy
Corn contains an impressively high amount of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates provide the energy required for the body and mind to function properly. Corn is a complex carbohydrate that takes time to get fully digested, and this is advantageous to the body, as it keeps the stomach fuller for longer. That’s not all; it’s also a good post-workout snack.
Who wouldn’t want healthy eyes? It’s safe to assume everyone does. It is generally known that food is the number one source of nutrients that are needed by the heart and other organs. Corn contains carotenoids – lutein and zeaxanthin. Now, these are highly beneficial for maintaining healthy eyes. They are often referred to as macular pigments that are present in the retina to prevent any damage that may be caused by free radicals. These are essential antioxidants.
It is no longer news that an antioxidant-rich diet will help prevent cancer. Antioxidants fight free radicals and prevent oxidative damage to the body. Sweet corn when cooked is said to have more antioxidants than its uncooked counterpart. Corn, in large quantity, contains carotenoid antioxidants that are proven to protect the eyes and skin from oxidative damage. Popped corn can be a great way to delightfully get those antioxidants into your body. Why wouldn’t you want to anyway?
A Rich Source of Fiber
Fiber is beneficial to the body in quite a number of ways such as reducing cholesterol and making the digestive system super efficient. Fiber is one of your body’s best friends. And with great delight, we announce that corn richly provides fiber to your body when eaten in various forms — on the cob or as popcorn. Corn is indeed excellent at this, as it provides 7 grams of fiber per 100 grams of serving. Eldorado! Fiber ensures the prevention of constipation, and it lowers cholesterol levels.
Weight loss is a bit of an issue in our part of the world. It appears it’s one of the world’s herculean tasks. Well, maybe not. To lose weight, eating the right kind of nutrient-rich foods is unquestionably necessary. Corn is one of the best snacks for weight loss. It’s a source of energy, and it’ll leave you feeling full for a longer time due to its fiber content. Now that curbs overeating a whole lot. Let’s share a secret with you. Come closer. To lose weight, eat popped corn made without salt, cooked with a tablespoon of coconut oil. Thank us later.
BioActive Plant Compounds
You really should be among the smart consumers of plant-based diets. Why not? Would you want to miss the immense benefits that plants contain in the form of phytonutrients and bio-active chemical compounds? Definitely not! Corn contains phytic acid, ferulic acid, anthocyanins, zeaxanthin, and lutein. These enzymes provide loads of health benefits.
Gluten intolerance leads to intense reactions by the enzyme, causing multiple complications. Corn and corn flour are available options as they’re naturally gluten-free, and better options than other grains.
Corn contains phenolic phytochemicals that are needed for the regulation of blood pressure and prevention of hypertension. Also in corn is a sufficient amount of vitamin B that is beneficial for the optimal functionality of your adrenal glands.
It is Rich in Manganese
Corn has got a fantastic amount of manganese per serving. And manganese has multiple benefits such as keeping the blood sugar levels in check. It fuels the body by breaking down complex carbohydrates.
Good for the Brain
Anyone ever told you corn was a source of thymine? Now you know. And thymine is an antioxidant that sharpens brain functions. It also helps synthesize acetylcholine, which in turn leads to an improved memory. Corn is such a darling, isn’t it?
Prevention of Anemia
Here’s another illness that you really should avoid. Symptoms of anemia are observed when there is a deficiency in vitamins and minerals such as iron in your body. The body needs iron and folate to form new red blood cells. Corn is a rich source of iron: in every 100 grams of serving, corn provides a whopping 2.7 mg of iron. Amazing corn, innit?
Side Effects of Corn
Risk of Pellagra
Consuming corn in high amounts puts you at risk of pellagra. Pellagra is the deficiency of vitamins, especially niacin in the body. Corn is deficient in amino acids (lysine and tryptophan) and niacin, which helps to protect the body from pellagra. If corn forms the major chunk of your diet, then make sure that you supplement your diet with vitamin-rich foods to prevent pellagra.
Consuming corn can lead to allergies and symptoms like rashes on the skin, swelling of mucous membrane, vomiting, and some other reactions. A number of people also suffer from asthma attacks and anaphylaxis after eating corn. The ingestible protein present in the corn is the reason for these allergies.
It Causes Indigestion and Stomach Upset
Corn is a rich source of fiber and other vital nutrients, which helps in flushing out bad toxins from the body. However, an overdose of these fibers can be unfavorable to your stomach.
It Causes Bloating and Flatulence
Corn contains a high percentage of starch. When consumed, corn breaks down in the large intestine and produces a lot of gas. Hence corn causes bloating and flatulence.
You wouldn’t have thought this snack was this healthy, would you? So congratulations, as you’ve got a new addition to your snack list.