Scientific Name – Zea mays
Amount Per 100 grams.
|Total Fat||4.7 g|
|Saturated fat||0.7 g|
|Polyunsaturated fat||2.2 g|
|Monounsaturated fat||1.3 g|
|Total Carbohydrate||74 g|
|Dietary fiber||9 g|
IT PREVENTS ANEMIA
Anemia is caused due to the deficiency of vitamin B12 and folic acid. Corn contains a significant amount of these as well as iron, which is one of the essential minerals required to form new red blood cells. The deficiency of iron can also cause anemia.
CORN IS THE RICH SOURCE OF CALORIES
Corn is a rich source of calories and is a staple among dietary habits in many populations. The calorific content of corn is 342 calories per 100 grams, which is among the highest for cereals. It is why corn is often turned to for quick weight gain, and combined with the ease and flexibility of growing conditions for corn, the high-calorie content makes it vital for the survival of dozens of agricultural-based nations.
IT IS GOOD FOR DIGESTION
Corn is high in dietary fiber which comprises of both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber helps in blocking cholesterol absorption by turning into a gel-like consistency whereas insoluble fiber prevents constipation and intestinal problems by promoting soft and bulky stool that can move easily through the intestines, reducing the chances of Irritable Bowel Syndrome and diarrhea. Thus, it helps prevent digestive problems like constipation and hemorrhoids as well as colon cancer. Though corn contains both types of fiber, it has a higher content of insoluble fiber.
REDUCES RISK OF HEMORRHOIDS AND COLORECTAL CANCER
The fiber content of one cup of corn amounts to 18.4% of the daily recommended amount. This aids in alleviating digestive problems such as constipation and hemorrhoids, as well as lowering the risk of colon cancer due to corn being a whole-grain. Fiber has long been promoted as a way to reduce colon risk, but insufficient and conflicting data exist for fiber’s relationship with preventing cancer, although whole-grain consumption, on the whole, has been proven to reduce that risk. Fiber helps to bulk up bowel movements, which stimulates peristaltic motion and even stimulates the production of gastric juice and bile. It can also add bulk to overly loose stools, which can slow reduce the chances of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and diarrhea.
PREVENTS ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
Corn is a good source of thymine, which is an integral participant in enzymatic reactions central to energy production as well as brain cell/cognitive function. It is also needed for the synthesis of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter essential for memory and whose deficiency can cause age-related impairment in mental function (senility) and Alzheimer’s disease.
IT HAS ANTIOXIDANT PROPERTIES
According to studies carried out at Cornell University, corn is a rich source of antioxidants which fight cancer-causing free radicals. In fact, unlike many other foods, cooking actually increases the number of usable antioxidants in sweet corn. Corn is a rich source of a phenolic compound called ferulic acid, an anti-carcinogenic agent that has been shown to be effective in fighting the tumors which lead to breast cancer as well as liver cancer. Anthocyanins, found in purple corn, also act as scavengers and eliminators of cancer-causing free radicals. Antioxidants have been shown to reduce many of the most dangerous forms of cancer because of their ability to induce apoptosis in cancerous cells while leaving healthy cells unaffected. This is particularly relevant when phytochemicals are the source of the antioxidants, which is another type of chemical found in high volumes in corn.
CORNS ARE BENEFICIAL DURING PREGNANCY
Being a rich source of folic acid, corn is particularly beneficial for pregnant women. The deficiency of folic acid in pregnant women can cause the birth of underweight infants and also cause neural tube defects at birth. Thus, pregnant women should include corn in their diet as it benefits the health of both the child and the expecting mother. However, in case of high blood pressure or swollen hands or feet, it is advisable to consult the doctor first.
IT IS RICH IN VITAMINS
Corn is rich in vitamin B constituents, especially Thiamin and Niacin. Thiamin is essential for maintaining nerve health and cognitive function. Niacin deficiency leads to Pellagra; a disease characterized by diarrhea, dementia, and dermatitis that is commonly observed in malnourished individuals. Corn is also a good source of Pantothenic acid, which is an essential vitamin for carbohydrate, protein, and lipid metabolism in the body. Deficiency of folic acid in pregnant women can lead to the birth of underweight infants and may also result in neural tube defects in newborns. Corn provides a large percentage of the daily folate requirement, while the kernels of corn are rich in vitamin E, a natural antioxidant that is essential for growth and protection of the body from illness and disease.
HELPS IN MAINTAINING HEALTHY SKIN
Yellow corn is a rich source of beta-carotene which forms vitamin A that is vital for the maintenance of a healthy skin. Vitamin C and lycopene are potent antioxidants that prevent the UV generated free radicals from damaging the skin and increase the production of collagen that assists in the maintenance of smooth skin. Besides being eaten, corn can also be applied topically to corn oil which is a rich source of linoleic acid.
PROTECTING YOUR HEART
According to researchers, corn oil has been shown to have an anti-atherogenic effect on cholesterol levels, thus reducing the risk of various cardiovascular diseases. Corn oil, particularly, is the best way to increase heart health, and this is derived from the fact that corn is close to an optimal fatty acid combination. This allows omega-3 fatty acids to strip away the damaging “bad” cholesterol and replace them at the binding sites. This will reduce the chances of arteries becoming clogged, will reduce blood pressure, and decrease the change of heart attack and stroke.
CORN HELPS IN BOOSTING YOUR ENERGY
Corn is considered a starchy vegetable as it contains a high amount of carbohydrates that provide you with short term and long term energy. They also ensure proper functioning of the brain and the nervous system. One cup of corn provides around 29 grams of carbs. This is particularly beneficial for athletes as they require more carbs to optimize exercise performance. Moreover, corn is a complex carb so it gets digested at a slow pace, thus providing you with balanced energy levels that are free of peaks and valleys. It is advisable to eat corn a couple of hours before exercising for lasting energy.
CONTROLS DIABETES AND HYPERTENSION
In recent decades, the world has seemed to suffer from an epidemic of diabetes. Although the exact mechanism for this cannot be pinpointed, it is generally assumed to relate to nutrition. Eating more organic fruits and vegetables, like corn, has been thought to be a return to an older style of diet, and it has been linked to reduced signs of diabetes. Studies have shown that the consumption of corn kernels assists in the management of non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) and is effective against hypertension due to the presence of phenolic phytochemicals in whole corn. Phytochemicals can regulate the absorption and release of insulin in the body, which can reduce the chance of spikes and drops for diabetic patients and help them maintain a more normal lifestyle.
IT PREVENTS SKIN PROBLEMS
Cornstarch is used as an ingredient in many cosmetic products and can even be applied topically to soothe skin rashes and irritation. Carcinogenic petroleum products can be substituted with corn products in cosmetic preparations as skin creams use petroleum jelly as a base material which can block pores and worsen the skin conditions.
IT IS BENEFICIAL FOR HEART
Corn oil is said to have an antiatherogenic effect on cholesterol levels, thus, protecting against cardiovascular diseases. Corn oil is particularly beneficial for the heart health as it has an optimal fatty acid combination, thus enabling omega-3 fatty acids to remove the damaging bad cholesterol and replace them at the bonding sites. As a result, it prevents the arteries from becoming clogged, reduces the blood pressure and reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke.
CORNS ARE PACKED WITH MINERALS
Corn contains abundant minerals which positively benefit the bodies in a number of ways. phosphorous, along with magnesium, manganese, zinc, iron, and copper are found in all varieties of corn. It also contains trace minerals like selenium, which are difficult to find in most normal diets. Phosphorous is essential for regulating normal growth, bone health, and optimal kidney functioning. Magnesium is necessary for maintaining a normal heart rate and for increasing bone strength.
IT HAS ANTI-CANCER PROPERTIES
Research has proved that the antioxidants found in corn can fight and eliminate cancer-causing free radicals. Moreover, this grain is a good source of the phenolic compound, the ferulic acid which is effective in fighting tumors in the breast and liver.
MAINTENANCE OF HEALTHY HAIR
Hot oil treatment with corn oil can give you soft and silky hair. It has the right balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that control inflammation and prevents the scalp from becoming dry and flaky. These fatty acids are important constituents of the cell structure facilitating the transport of fat and the deficiency of any of these can cause brittle hair or hair fall. For this purpose, heat corn oil for half a minute and massage it on your scalp with the tip of your fingers. Leave it for 15 minutes and then rinse with shampoo to get soft and lustrous hair.
CORN LOWERS LDL CHOLESTEROL
According to the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, consumption of corn husk oil lowers plasma LDL cholesterol by reducing cholesterol absorption in the body. As mentioned earlier, this reduction of LDL cholesterol does not mean a reduction in HDL cholesterol, which is considered “good cholesterol” and can have a variety of beneficial effects on the body, including the reduction of heart disease, prevention of atherosclerosis, and a general scavenger of free radicals throughout the body.
IT IMPROVES VISION
The yellow kernels of corn contain substances called carotenoids that reduce the risk of macular degeneration i.e. impairment of vision at the center of your line of sight. Beta-carotene helps in producing vitamin A, thus supporting the better vision.
CORN STRENGTHENS CONNECTIVE TISSUE
Connective tissue is comprised of bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, and cartilage. Corn contains the trace mineral manganese that strengthens the connective tissue. In addition to these, manganese keeps the blood sugar levels stable and breaks down carbs and fat to provide energy. A cup of corn provides about 12 percent of the daily recommended value of manganese. Corn also contains a large proportion of minerals like magnesium, iron, copper, and phosphorus that are needed for healthy bones. These nutrients prevent your bones from cracking as you grow older.