Did you know that the kernel of corn comes in various colours?
We eat corn at least once a year and haven’t asked ourselves what are the health benefit? or What makes it so special?. Well brace yourselves cause you are about to find out what this juicy grain has to offer.
Maize commonly called corn is an annual grass in the family of Gramineae. It’s botanical name is Zea mays.
The production of corn dates as far as back to 7300 BP (years before the present), making it one of the oldest and most consumed grain with it’s total production rate surpassing that of wheat or rice. Even though it is an extremely versatile crop, it is usually breed in wet, hot climate, being a cold intolerant plant with shallow root system dependent on soil moisture.
There are over 3000 different uses of corn and is a major component in many food items like cereals, peanut butter, snack foods and soft drinks e.g (coca cola contains corn sweeteners). They are central to Mexican food as almost all Mexican food has corn as it’s ingredient. Although majorly being termed as ‘yellow grains’ maize comes in various colors; red, blue, purple you mention it( depending on where the it is grown and what species or variety they happen to be). These colored corns are also edible although some are kept for ornamental purposes.
BENEFITS OF MAIZE
Corn is heavily 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. It is also a good source of pantothenic acid, which is an essential vitamin for carbohydrate, protein, and lipid metabolism in the body.
The most common type of anemia globally is Iron deficiency anemia.
Iron is the most important element for blood production in our body. 70% of iron in the body is located in the red blood cells.
Corn is rich is in Iron (2.71mg), Folic Acid and Vitamin B6 which helps in the creation of red blood cells in the body. People aged 19 to 50 needs about 18mg of iron per day, and corn provides 2.71mg of iron per 100g.
Adding corn in your diet would be a good idea for the prevention of Anemia.
High amount of carbohydrate
Corn is low in Fat and Calories but it is not low in the matter of carbohydrates, corn yellow grain contains about 74.26g of carbohydrates in 100g, which makes it one of the most carbs rich grains. Daily magazine recommends of carbohydrates is 46 to 65 percent of your total daily calories. So, if you are getting 1,000 calories a day, between 450 and 650 calories must be from carbohydrates. If you are not getting enough carbs per day, add corns in your diet.
Helpful For Skin
Corns are rich in lycopene and Vitamin C these are antioxidants which helps to increase the number of collagen (the main structural protein found in skin) in your body and it prevents UV generated free radicals from harming the skin. Vitamin C then produces a protein called “collagen”. Collagen is important for our body because it would improve your skin elasticity, increase skin moisture content and reduce wrinkles. So, go get a corn and make your skin better.
If you are on the underweight and currently trying to get it up by a few pounds while controlling it then I recommend eating corn. Reason being corn contains high amounts of carbohydrates and is high in calories as well, so eat corn as much as you can, it will definitely help you to gain those extra kg’s you need.
Eye & Skin Care
Yellow corn is a rich source of beta-carotene, which forms vitamin A in the body and is essential for the maintenance of good vision and skin. As per a study published in the Science journal, beta-carotene is a great source of vitamin A because it is converted into the body according to the amount required. Vitamin A can be toxic if too much is consumed, so deriving it through beta-carotene transformation is ideal. It will also benefit the health of skin and mucous membranes, as well as boost the immune system.
The amount of beta-carotene in the body that is not converted into vitamin A acts as a very strong antioxidant, like all carotenoids, and can combat diseases like cancer and heart disease. That being said, smokers need to be careful about their beta-carotene intake, because smokers with high beta-carotene levels are more likely to contract lung cancer, while non-smokers with high beta-carotene content are less likely to contract lung cancer.
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 related to nutrition. Studies have shown that consumption of whole grains is related to a decreased risk in the development of type 2 diabetes. According to the Journal of Medicinal Food, consumption of its 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 healthy lifestyle.
Serves as a Background for Genetics
Corn is an excellent organism for studying genetics for several reasons. There are many different phenotypes which are easy to identify in corn kernels (corn seeds). Also, an ear of corn produces many offspring (corn seeds), within a relatively short amount of time. Corn is an important crop till date and as so its genetics have been extensively investigated.