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Are Corn Nuts Healthy?

Is eating Corn Nuts a good snack option? Find out whether these crunchy little morsels are good for you – or not.

To some people, a day isn’t complete without munching on a crunchy snack. Unfortunately, many crunchy snacks are high in calories and fat – and almost completely devoid of nutrition. One snack that’s a favorite of some crunchy snack lovers is corn nuts. Are corn nuts healthy?

What Are Corn Nuts?

The name “corn nuts” is a little deceiving since corn nuts aren’t nuts at all. These salty little morsels are made by soaking kernels of corn in water until they’re soft – and then deep frying them. Word has it that they were invented by a tavern owner in the 1930’s who wanted his customers to have something to snack on while they drank their beer. This “beer snack” has stood the test of time since corn nuts are still sold in the snack section of most grocery stores ‘” and they’re now available in a variety of flavors including barbeque, sweet, adobo, and chili cheese.

Are Corn Nuts Healthy?

Corn nuts are deep fried. Despite this, a third of a cup of corn nuts has significantly less fat (4.5 grams) than a serving of classic potato chips. (10 grams in about twenty chips) – but they’re only slightly lower in calories. On the plus side, most of the fat in corn nuts is the healthier polyunsaturated and monounsaturated variety. They’re about twenty percent higher in carbohydrates than potato chips.

What about nutritional value? It’s natural to think that since they’re made of corn, they have some nutritional benefits. Unfortunately, the nutrients naturally found in corn don’t survive the deep frying process since corn nuts have little in the way of vitamins and minerals – with the exception of small amounts of vitamin K, vitamin B6, niacin, and iron. Don’t count on corn nuts to help you meet your daily vitamin and mineral requirements.

As might be expected, corn nuts aren’t low in sodium at 160 milligrams per serving, but they still have less salt than the average potato chip. Another problem with corn nuts? They have a tough exterior and it would be easy to crack a filling – or even a tooth – when biting into one. Eat them very carefully.

The Bottom Line?

Corn nuts don’t have a lot going for them from a nutrient standpoint. On the other hand, they have less fat than a standard potato chip and a little less salt. It makes more sense from a nutritional standpoint to eat regular nuts, but if only a corn nut will do – eat them in moderation.

References:

The Daily Plate website.

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