Sunday, May 18, 2014

I'll take a corn-on-the-cob with no butter please....

By: Jeanette Andrade MS,RDN,LDN

As a little girl my family would head up to the annual Wisconsin state fair for some good eats and fun on the rides. Shortly after we paid our entrance fee, we would run to stand in the long line at the sweet corn-on-the-cob tent. I remember the person would take our order and dip the entire corn-on-the-cob into the huge vat of butter and wrap it in a small piece of wax paper with some napkins that would soon be soaked in butter. I would then take the salt shaker and sprinkle the corn with salt. My mouth would be watering as I went to take a bite. When I finally took that bite, my mouth had little fireworks going off of it as there was a mix of sweetness, saltiness, and of course fat. I devoured that corn in a matter of minutes. Man, those were the good days. Now, I use much less butter and even request them not to dip the corn in butter. I hardly even sprinkle the salt on the corn. So you may ask, “Why should I not add butter and salt to my corn-on-the-cob? What is so special about eating corn by itself?” 

Corn is a starchy vegetable, which means it has more carbohydrates than non-starchy vegetables such as green beans or carrots. This is not bad as carbohydrates provides you with energy and keeps your intestinal tract happy as fibers are within corn. Additionally, corn contains antioxidants (touched on in the strawberry blog), but these antioxidants differ depending upon the color of the corn (i.e. white, yellow, purple, or red). Since I live in the mid-west the most common color corn variety is yellow. Yellow corn has antioxidant properties derived from carotenoids, specifically lutein and zeaxanthin (1).  Corn also contains B-vitamins, phosphorous, and manganese (1). So the next time you stand in the long line to get a corn-on-the-cob ask for no butter and do not use the salt to savor all the nutrients packed within that corn.

1)      The George Mateljan Foundation (2014). Corn. Retrieved from


Beverly Holmes said...

Corn is not a vegetable, it is a grain.

Beverly Holmes said...

I must say that although corn is not a vegetable, grains are very good for you as well, and I love corn. When I was living in Germany some years ago, I was told that they did not eat corn there, it was food for their livestock. I don't know if that has changed since then. Now corn is also harvested for fuel. Enjoy your corn. (:

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