What’s the Deal with Corn?

Corn is a big deal in the United States. From the traditional role it has played in the indigenous history of the land to the modern ubiquity of corn products in American consumer goods, corn, or maize, might surprise you yet. Something many people don’t seem to realize intuitively is that corn is not a vegetable. It is a grain. So, you are going to want to approach eating corn differently than you might approach eating spinach or broccoli.

That is not to say that grains cannot be part of a great fat-loss plan. There are a number of whole grains that definitely have a place in a balanced and nutritious diet:

  • barley
  • full flake or steel-cut oats
  • sprouted grain
  • amaranth
  • millet
  • quinoa (which is technically a seed)
  • wild rice (which is technically a grass)

Minimally processed whole grains are packed with naturally-occurring vitamins and minerals. They are also high in natural fiber, which keeps you feeling full and encourages a healthier gastrointestinal tract. The body is slow to digest these complex carbs, which stabilizes blood sugar and energy levels. Corn can sometimes offer some of the these same benefits.

The trouble with corn is that corn-based foods do not often offer anywhere near the same great benefits to the body that organically-grown corn on the cob can. High-fructose corn syrup, just one of the most common ingredients derived from corn, has been linked to obesity, cardiovascular disease, insulin resistance, and diabetes. Scientists at Princeton even found that rats who ate high-fructose corn syrup gained significantly more weight than rats who ate the same caloric values of table sugar.

This illustrates the harsh reality – the more heavily processed forms of corn you can find in foodstuffs like breakfast cereals and other snacks can do your body real damage over time. Whole grain sweet corn, however, retains some truly substantive nutritious value.

The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional or any information contained on or in any product label or packaging. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosis or treatment of any health problem or for prescription of any medication or other treatment. Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem. You should not stop taking any medication without first consulting your physician.