November 23, 2004
Innovative Uses of Corn for Healthier Diets Outlined in CRA's Newly Released 2004 Corn Annual Report
Source: Corn Refiners Association
WASHINGTON, Nov. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- As the nation's farmers harvest a record corn crop, the Corn Refiners Association releases its 2004 Corn Annual Report entitled, Corn - Part of a Healthy Diet. The 2004 Corn Annual covers many ways that corn-based ingredients are contributing to great-tasting food and beverage choices, some with enhanced nutrition and reduced calories and fat.
There are many long-recognized uses of corn that have become a staple of the American diet, including corn starch, glucose syrups, high fructose corn syrup and other organic and amino acids. Several corn-derived products are increasingly being used in healthy alternative food choices for consumers. Examples include --
* Reduced Trans Fats -- Corn oil serves as a viable alternative to
partially hydrogenated vegetable oils for production of zero trans fat
processed foods and as a component in reduced trans fat foods in
* Sports-Oriented Products -- The ability to add soluble dietary fiber to
clear beverages and to improve the flavor of soy-protein enriched
nutrition shakes is made possible with resistant maltodextrin. This
corn-derived product can also be used in food and beverage formulations
to effectively manage serum glucose before, during and after exercise.
* Vitamin Supplements -- Using corn-derived products, Vitamin E can be
added to water without clouding, sedimentation or oil droplets rising
to the top of the liquid. Water and other beverages can be
supplemented with fat-soluble vitamins by encapsulating these vitamins
with modified starches or cyclodextrins.
* Low-Sugar Products -- Reduced calorie corn-derived sweeteners have
fewer calories than sugar, do not promote tooth decay and elicit a low
glycemic index that many studies are showing to be beneficial to
persons with diabetes and for certain diets. These sweeteners made from
corn are known as polyols, or sugar alcohols.
* Corn Oil -- One of the two essential acids necessary for growth, good
skin and hair quality is found in corn oil-linoleic acid. In addition,
corn oil plays an important role in lowering blood cholesterol levels
due to the polyunsaturated fats and the phytosterols it contains.
Numerous studies show that diets enriched in polyunsaturated fatty
acids can significantly lower elevated blood pressure in individuals
with high blood pressure.
* Nutritional Enhancements -- Removing cholesterol from products such as
milk, butter and eggs, or replacing egg yolk in salad dressing and
sodium caseinate in non-dairy creamers, are additional uses of corn-
derived cyclodextrins and modified starches.
The emphasis of the 2004 Corn Annual Report on new and innovative uses of corn aims to promote healthier food choices and help motivate Americans to make better lifestyle choices and to improve America's prospects for a healthier future.
"CRA strongly advocates that the national, and increasingly global, campaign for better health must be a cooperative effort among government, health professionals, consumers and industry," said Audrae Erickson, President, Corn Refiners Association. "The corn wet milling industry is committed to serve the public interest through scientific innovation and new product development. The CRA is proud of the array of healthy foods made with corn, and we wish to support the goal of promoting healthier food choices available to consumers."
"It is imperative to raise awareness of the serious health risks associated with obesity and being overweight," Erickson said. "Through a collective effort, it is possible to create opportunities for Americans to do their part to stem the rise in adverse health conditions by increasing awareness of the importance of exercise, caloric balance for weight maintenance and healthier food choices."
Many civilizations were founded on corn as a primary staple. America, with the largest corn production in the world, uses many ingredients from corn in the production of foods and beverages. New and innovative uses of refined corn ingredients are providing healthier alternatives to American consumers to improve their diets.
The 2004 Corn Annual Report, Corn - Part of a Healthy Diet, is available online at http://www.corn.org.
Please visit CRA at http://www.corn.org