By Adrian Joele
Corn has been a staple food in America since ancient times. And meals made with corn dating back about 7,000 years. Corn is an excellent basic food source and combined with other vegetables in the diet, it is a good source of protein, carbohydrates, and vitamins.
Today, the United States is still one of the largest commercial growers of corn. But the humble food’s health benefits often get overlooked. It turns out that corn may offer a powerful contribution in the fight against cancer.
A research conducted at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles found that an orange-red carotenoid found in corn: beta-cryptoxanthin, was protective against lung cancer. The scientist found that men who ate the most food containing beta-cryptoxanthin had a 15 to 40% less chance of getting lung cancer, compared with the men who ate the least.
Another research at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore found that a compound of fiber that is found in abundance in corn: inositol hexaphosphate, prevents the growth of colon cancer cells in test tubes. Researchers found that it stops the cancer cells from dividing.
Corn contains soluble fiber, which binds with bile, a cholesterol-laden digestive fluid produced by the liver. Since soluble fiber isn’t readily absorbed by the body, it passes out in the stool, taking the cholesterol with it. It has the same potential as wheat bran and oat to lower cholesterol.
Low in Calories and Loaded with Nutrients A great advantage of corn is that it provides a lot of energy while delivering a small number of calories – about 83 per serve.
Corn is an excellent source of thiamin, a B vitamin that’s essential to convert food into energy. An ear of corn provides 0.2 mg of thiamin, 13% of the Daily Value (DV) for this nutrient. And since fresh sweet corn consists primarily of simple and complex carbohydrates, it’s a superb energy source. It provides our energy needs without providing us with a lot of fat. The little fats in corn are polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, which are much healthier than the saturated fats found in meats and high-fat dairy foods.
How to buy and to prepare corn Make sure it’s mature. When you buy corn at the supermarket, look for corn that has full plump kernels. When it is at the optimum stage of maturity it contains most nutrients. To check if corn is ripe, puncture one of the kernels with your fingernail. If the liquid that comes out of it is not milky-colored, the corn is either immature or overripe and you should not buy it.
Get the whole kernel
No matter how diligent you are when eating corn on the cob, you invariably leave a lot behind. To get the most out of each kernel, you’re better off buying frozen or canned corn. Or you can cut the kernels from the cob with a knife. Unlike eating it right off the cob. You get more of the corn’s benefits by having a mechanical cut that takes the entire kernel off.
Buy it vacuum-packed
While canned corn can be almost as nutritious as fresh, it loses some of its value when it’s packed in brine, a salty liquid that leeches nutrients from food during processing. Look for vacuum packed corn to get the most vitamins, which doesn’t contain brine. Corn that’s vacuum packed (you can read it on the label), usually comes in short, squat cans. Or choose frozen corn instead. Studies at the FDA showed that frozen corn is just as nutritious as fresh.
In the Kitchen
Corn on the cob is very easy to prepare. All you have to do is strip off the husk and corn silk, and steam the ears for a few minutes. Here are a few tips for maximum taste.
Don’t heat corn rapidly but cook it right away to avoid the sugar to turn into starch. Don’t use salt, this will draw moisture from the kernels, and makes them tough and hard to chew.
Strip the Kernels. When you have a craving for fresh corn but don’t want to wrestle with the cob, just strip the kernels off. Hold the cob upright in a bowl. Using a sharp knife, slice downward, cutting away a few rows at the time. When all the kernels are removed, scrape the dull side of the blade down the sides of the cob to extract the sweet, milky juice.
In 2008 Adrian became an associate with a nutritional supplement manufacturer. From that time on, I became more aware of the advantages of healthy living and a healthy lifestyle. I heard about the bad eating habits of many Americans, which causes obesity, overweight and degenerative diseases.
About the Author
In 2009 I created my own website and blog and called it “Nutrobalance”, which means: balanced nutrition. Also when I worked for this Nutritional Supplement Company, I became aware of the importance of good nutrition. I learned that it is true when they say: ”You are what you eat.” And you can add at least 10 more years to your life by eating the right way and taking regular exercise.
Article source: Amazines