From personal care products to adhesives found on stamps and envelopes, corn is everywhere. I had a hard time pinning this down, but we eat on average about 34 pounds per year per person and that doesn’t include the somewhere around 40 pounds of corn syrup consumed.
What is the problem with corn consumption?
Contrary to popular belief, corn actually contains gluten. Dr. Peter Osbourne, spokesman for the Gluten Free Society and author of No Grain No Pain, “…recognizes that corn gluten is a harmful component for the gluten-sensitive.”
He points out that most folks are unaware that corn might be a trigger for their health issues. “Many claim that they don’t react to corn and feel fine after eating it. The same can be said of those with silent celiac disease. Remember that a lack of symptoms does not mean that internal damage is not occurring.”
Even for those not sensitive to corn, its consumption still may be an issue for those with gluten sensitivity due to something called molecular mimicry. What this means is that corn contains a similar amino acid sequence to gluten. This can confuse the immune system into believing corn is gluten, initiating an immune response.
He also lists additional issues with corn:
- Corn is the second-most commonly genetically modified food on the planet after soy. “…evidence shows that corn and corn-based products are largely produced from genetically modified varieties (GMO) and can contribute to intestinal permeability, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, and a host of other health issues.”
- it is difficult for humans to digest
- It is high in calories and low in nutrient value
- It is a relatively new food to the human genome
- It is being used as a staple food for our cattle, fish, and chicken– not designed for its consumption. Animals fed corn as a staple tend to have shorter life spans.
- Corn-fed beef is linked to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and obesity whereas Grass-fed beef has not.
- Fructose derived from corn is toxic to the liver and can contribute to blood sugar issues
- Corn syrup often contains mercury
- Corn mold from growth and storage can lead to a host of illnesses
What is the best way to test for corn issues?
The most effective method is a 1-2 month elimination diet to calm down the immune system. Food then can be reintroduced to determine if it still a problem for you.
This process would involve a bit of detective work to make sure it is not hidden in prepared foods, personal care products, etc. Note that many B vitamin supplements are derived from corn.