Corn Flour Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 08/12/22 •  11 min read
corn flour benefits and side effects

HEALTH

Energy: corn flour benefits may include aided digestion | corn flour side effects may include inhibited nutrient absorption

Longevity: corn flour benefits may include combat free radicals, detoxification | corn flour side effects may include spiked blood sugar

Appearance: corn four side effects may include weight gain

Corn flour is…

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08/15/2022 05:37 pm GMT

ENVIRONMENT

Water footprint: low, 1,253 liters of water used to produce 1 kilogram of corn flour / 150 gallons of water used to produce 1 pound of corn flour

Carbon footprint: likely low, 0.43 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of dry organic corn, a car driving equivalent of 1 mile or 1.5 kilometers

Destruction: high, corn depletes nitrogen and other important nutrients from the soil, more than a third of U.S. corn is used for animal feed, another third grown for ethanol for cars,  92% of corn crops grown in the US in 2016 was genetically modified (GMO), crops are modified to increase yield and improve resistance to insects, disease or chemicals used to kill pests

Corn flour is…

ANIMALS

Kills: none, corn flour production does not require any animals to be killed

Harms: none, corn flour production does not require any animals to be used

Indirectly kills or harms: wildlife and ecosystems, 92% of corn crops grown in the US in 2016 was genetically modified (GMO), crops are modified to resist chemicals used to kill pests, pesticides harm and kill wildlife and ecosystems by contaminating soil, water, air and plants that animals eat

Corn flour is…

LABORERS

Health and safety: varies, overall, agriculture continues to be one of the most dangerous industries, farmworkers may be subject to dehydration, heat stroke, unprotected exposure to harmful, toxic chemicals and pesticides, unsafe machinery and clean drinking water may not always accessible

Living conditions: varies, laborers are often exploited, they may face tough working conditions including long hours in the sun and heat performing physically exhausting tasks, labor laws and rights may or may not be in place, even if worker protection exists, employer violations may go unreported, refugees and migrant workers are especially vulnerable to abuse and mistreatment, fearing consequences of job loss or deportation

Wages: varies, generally farmworkers earn meager wages, there are many cases of underpaid agricultural workers, wage theft and no overtime payment or benefits

Corn flour…

Where does most corn flour come from?

The world’s top corn producing country is USA, followed by China and Brazil. The world’s top corn flour producing country is Mexico, followed by USA, El Salvador, Italy, Uganda, Germany, South Africa, Honduras, Netherlands and Spain.

Is corn flour nutritious?

Corn flour is high in fiber and protein, contains B vitamins, iron, potassium, magnesium, and several other nutrients.

corn flour is likely acidic.

acidic foods and alkaline diet benefits that improve ph levels

Is corn flour alkaline or acidic? Corn flour is likely acidic.

When you eat food, it breaks down to an ash residue that can be neutral, acidic or alkaline. Minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, zinc, silver, copper and iron produce an alkaline ash; whereas sulfur, phosphorus, chlorine and iodine, which are in meat, coffee, dairy and alcohol, leave an acid ash.

Going alkaline easier than ever with this: Acidic and Alkaline Foods List

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corn flour is gluten free.

glutinous foods have side effects but a gluten free diet can help

Is corn flour gluten free? Yes, corn flour is gluten free. Corn flour does not contain gluten.

While celiac disease may not be as rampant as many marketing trends lead us to believe, you may have a gluten sensitivity…

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

corn flour is not a common food allergen.

side effects of common food allergens like milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Is corn flour a common food allergen? No, corn flour is not a common food allergen. Some people may experience allergic reactions to corn flour but it is uncommon.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

These foods account for about 90% of all food allergies in the United States.

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

corn flour is a low-fodmap food.

fodmap friendly food

Is corn flour FODMAP friendly?

Yes. Corn flour is a low-FODMAP food and fit into a low-FODMAP diet. 

A low FODMAP diet may help those with bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, stomach pain, and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome).

It’s all about knowing your body. Observe what works and what doesn’t. You body might even react negatively to a low-FODMAP food simply due to intolerance. Everyone is different! Be mindful and patient. Take time to get to know what’s best for your physical health and overall wellbeing.

See this High-FODMAP and Low-FODMAP List of Food

corn flour has a low water footprint.

water footprints of food and products

Does corn flour have a high or low water footprint? Corn flour has a relatively low water footprint compared to other foods.

What is the water footprint of corn flour? It takes 1,253 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of corn flour / 150 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of corn flour.

Did you know that water is a finite, non-renewable resource?

We must do what we can to conserve fresh water and a major way to reduce needless water consumption is to change the way we eat. That’s not to say we need to reduce our water intake….quite the opposite. It’s important for our health to drink lots of water and eat foods that hydrate. The kind of water conservation we’re talking about here is behind the scenes.

How much water does it take to produce an apple? A serving of rice? A steak dinner?

We need to be aware of “water footprints”. That is, the amount of fresh water utilized in the production or supply of goods we consume. As it turns out it takes significantly more water to yield foods that come from animals than foods that come from plants. Imagine how much water a cow needs to consume to generate a piece of beef. Not only how much water a single cow drinks, rather all the water that went into producing the crops that the cow ate.

Find out how much water your food consumes with this: Water Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

corn flour likely has a low carbon footprint.

carbon footprints of food and food emissions

Does corn flour have a high or low carbon footprint? Corn flour has a relatively low carbon footprint compared to other foods.

What is the carbon footprint of corn flour? It takes around 0.43 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of dry organic corn, a car driving equivalent of 1 mile or 1.5 kilometers.

Food not only has a water footprint but also a carbon footprint, known as CO2e, which stands for carbon dioxide equivalent. Since carbon measurements are a bit more difficult to comprehend, it is common to equate CO2e to the distance which a car drives in miles or kilometers.

When calculating carbon emissions, some factors may include…

There are a number of steps we can take to reduce energy output. According to Oxford Martin School researchers, if the world went vegan, eliminating animal-derived products, it could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds and avoid climate damages of $1.5 trillion.

But that’s not all!

It’s best to keep the following in mind when grocery shopping:

Find out how much carbon your food emits with this: Carbon Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

corn flour is unsustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, is corn flour eco friendly? Is corn flour sustainable

Corn flour production is relatively unsustainable.

Corn production depletes nitrogen and other important nutrients from the soil. More than a third of American grown corn is used for animal feed, another third grown for ethanol for cars. 92% of corn crops grown in the US in 2016 was genetically modified (GMO). Such crops are modified to increase yield and improve resistance to insects, disease or chemicals used to kill pests. GMOs are often coupled with toxic, harmful pesticides that are toxic for eco systems and wildlife.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

A 2010 United Nations report said that a global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world the worst impacts of climate change.

corn flour is vegan but harmful to wildlife and ecosystems if not organic.

benefits of vegan food to eat on a vegan diet which helps save animals

Is corn flour vegan? Yes, corn flour is vegan. Corn flour is made from corn, a cereal grain, and not an animal product or byproduct, therefore making it a vegan food. However, it should be noted that corn is often harmful to ecosystems and wildlife if not organic.

Animals of factory farming are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. Growth hormones allow all kinds of animals to become fatter faster and live short lives.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

corn flour is a product that may or may not have labor issues.

benefits of buying fair trade, labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is corn flour a product that has laborer issues? At this time, there are no specific reports of worker mistreatment regarding corn farming but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Corn flour may or may not have labor issues.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Sadly, many labor concerns exist around the world in both developed and developing countries. We must be vigilant to ensure what we buy is not contributing to industries that are unfair to their valuable workers. Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade.

Sources:

Corn flour, whole-grain, yellow – FoodData Central

flour corn flour: Topics by Science.gov

Processing maize flour and corn meal food products – NCBI

Adriane Marie

Grocery Guru, Material Maven, Conscious Consumer Connoisseur. I organize ethical info for us to comprehensively see how purchases impact people, animals and the planet. I hope you find HEALabel helpful! Use it for personal and global improvement and empowerment.