Kudos to the wonderful soul that thought about the African maize – corn(oka) and native pear(ube) combo. Those two are DELICIOUS together. They’re like man and wife, and of course pear (ube, as the Igbo tribe of Nigeria popularly call it) is the wife, with her very creamy sweet self. Lol
Yes! Corn season is here and so is pear, and I’ve wasted no time devouring them two. I’m pretty sure you all have being doing same. It will give your jaws a workout, which is why Nigerians will often refer to eating corn as ‘chewing corn’ (kind of like chewing curd!).
There are some misconceptions about the corn and pear. They are:-
“Roasted pear causes malaria” (say what!?) Funny enough, I heard it today from someone I never believed would utter such.
“Corn causes cough.” Like seriously? This is the season, and I expect you all to be eating fresh soft corn. When you eat those strong ones, it can sometimes cause irritation in the throat which could make you cough. It’s something that happens within seconds, it isn’t long term.
“Pear causes pimple.” No way! It never causes pimple. Yes! It produces oil but that’s good oil, the type the body needs (unsaturated fats).
Nutritional value of corn
Corn falls into not just one food category, but two. When you eat it off the cob, they are classified as vegetables, but if you dry and pop the kernel, into popcorn it is considered a grain.
Corn is also a nutritional powerhouse, rich in antioxidants and fiber. The yellow can has added nutritional value. It contains vitamin A, which improves eye sight. Below are its nutritional/health value extensively explained.
Improves Blood Pressure
Eating corn may help lower blood pressure. One cup of yellow corn contains 392 milligrams of potassium, and 1 cup of white corn contains 416 milligrams. Getting more potassium in your diet can improve blood pressure. The American Heart Association recommends 4,700 milligrams a day. Eating corn, whether yellow or white, can help you meet your daily needs. However, eating foods high in potassium isn’t good for everyone, specifically older adults and people with kidney disease. So, if you’re not sure about your potassium needs, talk to your doctor.
Rich in Antioxidants
Like other vegetables, corn can help you fight against cell damaging free radicals, and may decrease your risk of heart disease, cancer and other diseases. According to Meals on Wheels West in Los Angeles, corn is a better source of antioxidants than wheat, rice or oats. The antioxidants found in corn include carotenoids, vitamin C and vitamin E.
Good for Your Eyes
Corn contains carotenoids (vitamin A pigments) that are very great for eyes, especially our indigenous yellow variety. As antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin protect the healthy cells in your eyes against damaging high-energy blue wavelengths of light.
1 cup serving of yellow corn has 3.9 grams of fiber, and the same serving of white corn has 4.2 grams of fiber. Most of the fiber in corn is insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber adds bulk to stool and may help prevent constipation. It also helps get toxins out of the body faster.
Nutritional value of pear
According to NaturalHealth.com, native pears are naturally high in vitamins C and K, as well as nutrients such as copper that acts as antioxidants by protecting the cells from damage.
Great for Heart Health
It protects the heart from harmful substances due to its fibre content.
It can also shield the body from different types of cancer, especially for women in their post-menopausal stage.
Native pear is a hypo-allergenic fruit.
Hypo-allergenic is the characteristic of provoking fewer allergic reactions in allergy sufferers, it can also mean having a decreased tendency to cause allergies; hypo means less, not none. Therefore, it is safe for infants.
Low Glycemic Index
Because they are high in fibre and have a low glycemic index, native pear is a smart snack for diabetic patients, because it serves blood glucose regulatory functions, It helps in regulating excess blood sugar in the body.
Dental Care uses
Native pear also helps to maintain healthy teeth and gum. I read an article some time ago that pear (ube) can be used for making toothpaste because of its noteworthy antioxidant and antimicrobial properties.
Preparing and enjoying native pear isn’t a daunting task. In just about 5minutes of softening in hot water or dry heat, the fleshy pulp of the pear is ready to eat especially with its perfect partner corn (African Maize). Eat at least one corn and three pears today. They’re ‘Deli nutritious’ like that!