Nutritional Value of Corn

Corn Nutrition Facts

Contrary to popular belief, there is nutritional value of corn and there's no need to avoid it because it has "too much sugar."

Corn has tragically been given a bad name thanks to (the misuse of) it's glycemic index.

(The glycemic index of corn is 56, which is considered moderate...NOT high!)

Nutritional Value of Corn

It's true that corn is a starchy vegetable and therefore has more carbohydrates and calories than other veggies. However, the chances of overeating corn the way you may overeat other high carb foods is slim to none.

I've been a dietitian for 18 years, and I've yet to hear a person tell me they can't stop bingeing on corn!

However, almost every day I work with someone who avoids corn (and bananas and carrots) like the plague due to the "sugar" (or carb) content, and then "cheats" by overeating sugary, processed junk food.

Why don't you avoid sugary, processed junk food like the plague and "cheat" by eating corn? What's up with the disconnect?!

There's no need to fear an ear of corn. The nutritional value of corn is a worthy part of any healthy meal.

Calories in Corn

1 6 1/2" ear (or 1/2 cup) has approximately:

  • 75 calories
  • 15 grams carbohydrate
  • 2 grams protein
  • 1 grams fat
  • 2 grams fiber

Corn calories are a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, folate, phosphorus, manganese, vitamin B1, and vitamin B5.

In other words...the nutritional value of corn is worthy of considering! It's NOT a source of "empty" calories like so many other "starchy" foods (pretzels, white bread, white pasta, cookies, muffins, cakes, etc.).

The nutritional value of corn goes beyond vitamins and minerals. Corn is packed with health-protective substances called beta-cryptoxanthin and lutein.

These are the carotenoids (plant chemicals) that give corn it's yellow color and they have disease protecting effects against lung cancer and macular degeneration.

Corn Nutrition Facts

Corn is one of the foods most likely to be genetically modified (think "frankenfood"). If you're concerned about eating only non-GMO foods, opt for organic corn and corn products (corn tortilla, corn chips, etc).

According to USDA regulations, organics may not contain genetically modified ingredients.

Easy Serving Suggestions:

  • Eat corn on the cob drizzled with flaxseed oil or sesame oil.
  • Saut√© corn with green chilis and onions.
  • Combine black beans, corn, and roasted red bell peppers. Serve over a bed of salad greens or roll in a lettuce leaf.
  • Roll scrambled egg whites + salsa + avocado in a corn tortilla.
  • Add corn kernels and diced tomatoes to guacamole.
  • Add to creative salads.
  • Season with chili powder and onion powder and grill.
  • Grill, remove from cob, and mix with chopped tomato, sweet onions, jalapeno pepper and lime juice for a tasty salsa.
  • For a low cal snack: organic air popped popcorn

Nutrition Facts on Popcorn

Popcorn can be a great snack...if prepared properly.

One cup (a very large handful) of air popped popcorn contains 30 calories and virtually no fat.

Popcorn is no longer a healthy choice if you pop it in oil and drown it in butter and salt.

A cup of oil popped popcorn tossed with a tablespoon of butter and a pinch of salt skyrockets (from 30 calories) to 155 calories, 14 grams of fat, and 200 mg. sodium.

Microwave popcorn can be just as bad, even if they're marketed as "light." Read labels to avoid popcorn that has partially hydrogenated oil listed in the ingredient list.

Best choice: air pop and season with garlic powder, onion powder, or a little cinnamon-sugar instead of butter-salt.

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