There's nothing quite like savouring a large tub of hot popcorn as you unwind from a stressful week at the movies. Though it is hard to contest the deliciousness of this movie snack - even minus that generous drizzle of butter, corn (on the cob or off) often gets a bad rap for being unhealthy.
So, we set out to examine the nutritional facts about corn and bust those myths. Read on to find out how these golden kernels can benefit your health.
Though a fruit and vegetable, corn also packs in all the nutrition associated with being a whole grain. Studies have shown that consumption of corn has been tied to lowering the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes. Potassium is well-known to keep blood pressure levels down, and corn contains about 6% of the daily value set by the FDA. Corn also has been found to have an anti-inflammatory effect, which keeps blood pressure in check.
Sure, corn contains carbs. But these are complex carbohydrates that break down at a slower pace and provide energy for a longer period. Around 100 grams of corn offers 21 grams of carbs. This not only provides energy but also ensures the proper functioning of the brain and nervous system.
Corn is loaded with fibre, which is incredible for digestion. This insoluble fibre absorbs water and bulks up stool to clean out your digestive tract and keep things moving. This prevents constipation, reduces the risk of haemorrhoids, and may help lower colon cancer risk.
The fibre also keeps you feeling full for longer and can help in stopping you from filling up on empty calories.
Aids bone health
It also has the antioxidant power of vitamin C, folic acid, and manganese, which contribute to bone health.
The carotenoids - lutein and zeaxanthin - that are found in corn are good for eyesight. These carotenoids or pigments are concentrated in the retina and reduce the chances of cataracts and age-related eye degenerative diseases.
Vitamin C, E, copper, and zinc, which are also found in corn, have been shown to protect against vision loss.
Reduces risk of anaemia
Corn is rich is in Vitamin B12, folic acid, and helps in reducing the risk of anaemia. Since Vitamin B12 is commonly found in animal products, corn is a good source of this vitamin for vegetarians and vegans, who depend on plant sources for their dietary requirements.