Health Benefits of Sweet Corn
Corn, also sometimes called maize, is a popular food known for its yellow kernels and pleasant taste. There are several health benefits of corn. Corn is native to Americas and was later introduced to the settlers of Mesoamerica. There are three major types of corn of which sweet corn is the most common. It can be often seen in supermarkets as well as roadside stands. Below is a list of nutritional value as well as health benefits of this amazing grain.
Nutrition Value of Corn
The nutrition value given here is per 100g of corn.
Carbohydrates and fiber
Corn is a rich source of carbohydrates. A 100g of corn gives you 14% (18.7g) of the total recommended allowance (RDA) of carbohydrates. Hence, care must be taken about the quantity of corn you are eating, as excess carbohydrates may get stored as fat in your body. Apart from being rich in carbohydrates, corn is also rich in dietary fiber. It contains about 2g of insoluble fiber which is 5% of RDA. Insoluble fiber has many health benefits.
Fats and proteins
Though 100g of corn has 1.35g of fat (7% RDA), it has zero cholesterol and virtually no saturated fats. Whatever fat corn has, is mono-unsaturated fat, which is healthy for our body. Corn also has about 6% (3.27 g) proteins.
Vitamins and Minerals
Corn is a very good source of B-vitamins such as folates (10.5% RDA), niacin (11% RDA), pantothenic acid (14% RDA) and thiamin (13% RDA). It is also a very good source of Vitamin A (6% RDA) and C (11% RDA), which have several health benefits. The different types of B-vitamins are necessary for healthy functioning of our body. Vitamin A is necessary for healthy functioning of eyes. Both Vitamin A and C are important antioxidants as they fight the harmful free radicals.
Corn is also a good source of potassium (6% RDA), copper (6% RDA), iron (6.5% RDA), manganese (7% RDA) and magnesium (9% RDA). Iron is essential for carrying oxygen in blood and maintaining a healthy hemoglobin count without which, one becomes anaemic. Potassium is an important electrolyte required for normal functioning of heart and nervous system. Copper is required for growth of bones and connecting tissue as well as proper utilization of iron. Both manganese and magnesium too are very important for proper functioning of the body. Corn is also low on sodium which is again good for health.
Some health benefits of corn
Corn has high content of insoluble fiber. This helps in preventing common digestion related problems such as hemorrhoids and constipation by improving bowel movement. The fiber also helps in preventing the accumulation of cholesterol in our body.
The fiber in corn is known to reduce colon cancer and blood-sugar levels.
Corn is also known to ease the problems of diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) by adding bulk to overly loose stools.
Corn is also rich in vitamins such as Vitamin C, thiamin, folic acid and niacin. Folic acid is known to be an important factor in preventing heart disease and neural-tube birth defects. Thiamin is necessary for maintaining good health of the nervous system.
Due to the rich content of vitamin B12 and folic acid, it is recommended for people suffering from anaemia.
Corn is a rich source of antioxidants, which help in fighting the cancer-causing free radicals in the body.
Corn starch can be topically applied to soothe skin irritation and rashes. It is often used in manufacturing cosmetics.
These are just some of the health benefits of corn. If eaten in a healthy way, it can give you many more health benefits.