10 Surprising Side Effects Of Corn

This cereal grain may be delicious to eat, but the aftermath may not always be favorable.

Reviewed by Dr. Pallavi Srivastava, PG Diploma in Sports Science & Fitness Nutrition
By Tanya Choudhary, ISSA Certified Specialist In Fitness & Nutrition

What can go wrong with corn? They are tasty, they have versatile usages, they are nutritious—what else is there to know? Do you want to know about the potential side effects of consuming excess amount of corn?

Not only shall we detail out the consequences of having too much corn but also let you know how corn is not a vegetable! Yes, you got that right! Corn is not a vegetable, but it is a food grain. Originally grown in Central America and Mexico, corn is now widely available worldwide.

Whether you have it as roasted corn on the cob or its kernels boiled, buttered, salted, or pureed into soups and gravies, corn is one versatile ingredient that can make for a good healthy food option anytime. Other than the commonly available yellow corn, the other varieties could be brown, purple, or blue. Other than these, can there be any other darker shade to corn? Is there any possible risk associated with eating too much corn?

To answer all that and more, we have done some detailed research and summed it all up for you in one place in this article. While you may enjoy the subtle sweet taste of corn, it is wise to be aware of the possible health concerns associated with its consumption. Read on to know further.

Top 10 Side Effects Of Corn:

A bowl of corn kernals against the backdrop of corn cobs


Here are some of the major corn side effects that you should be aware of:

1. Allergic Reactions

Consuming corn can lead to allergies and symptoms like rashes on the skin, swelling of the mucous membrane, vomiting, etc. Many people also suffer from asthma attacks and anaphylaxis after eating corn (1). The main reason behind the allergies is the ingestible protein present in the corn.

2. Risk Of Pellagra

Corn is a staple food of many people. If you consume corn in high amounts, then you are at the risk of pellagra (2). Pellagra is nothing but a deficiency of vitamins, especially niacin in the body. Corn is deficient in amino acids (lysine and tryptophan) and niacin, which help to protect the body from pellagra. If corn forms the major chunk of your diet, then make sure that you supplement your diet with vitamin-rich foods to prevent pellagra.

3. Not Good For Diabetics

Woman using a glucometer to check her blood sugar levels


Corn adversely affects people suffering from diabetes as it increases the blood sugar level in the body. Corn has a high carbohydrate content, which leads to the increase in blood sugar levels (3). So people suffering from diabetes should not consume corn in large quantities.

4. Causes Bloating And Flatulence

Corn contains a high percentage of starch. When you consume corn, it breaks down in the large intestine and produces a lot of gas. So if someone consumes corn in large quantities, then it can cause bloating and flatulence.

5. Causes Indigestion And Stomach Upset

Corn is a good source of fiber and other vital nutrients, which helps in flushing out bad toxins from the body. But an overdose of these fibers can be bad for your stomach. Even if you eat large portions of cereals, then it can lead to indigestion and stomach cramps (4)! So, keep a watch on how much corn you are consuming, in any of its forms.

6. Causes Intestinal Irritation And Diarrhea

Woman clutching her stomach and lying on the couch because of digestive pain


Corn should not be consumed raw as it can result in diarrhea (5). Corn also leads to many intestinal disorders (6). You must consult your doctor if you find symptoms that warrant some checking out.

7. May Cause Tooth Decay

Corn contains a good amount of sugar, so it can lead to tooth decay in some people. This is relatively one of the rare side effects of corn, but not one that should be taken lightly! Make sure you follow good oral hygiene and brush your teeth after eating corn (7).

8. May Cause Osteoporosis

People who depend on corn diet can suffer from osteoporosis as corn contains very less amount of calcium. But this is relevant only if corn is not supplemented with appropriate calcium-rich food.

9. Increases Weight

Woman about to step onto the weighing machine


As mentioned before, corn contains a heavy dose of sugar and carbohydrate. Overzealous eating of corn can surely lead to weight gain (8). People on a diet should avoid consumption of corn.

10. Leads To Lethargy

Woman feeling lethargic


Corn contains an ample amount of starch. Starch can cause drowsiness and lead to lethargy (9).

These are the side effects of eating excess corn. Most of these so-called negative effects of corn can actually be countered with a balanced meal. For the rest, well, just watch your portion size!

Corn is loaded with nutrients that promote overall health. However, one must also note the side effects of corn associated with overconsumption. Corn may aggravate pellagra, bloating, flatulence, and cause stomach upset. It may also cause tooth decay and increase the risk of osteoporosis and weight gain. The excess starch in corn may also cause lethargy. It is also not suitable for people with diabetes. Hence, moderate consumption is advised.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is corn good for the lungs?

Yes, consuming corn in moderate amounts is beneficial to the lungs.

Is boiled corn acidic?

Yes, boiled corn is acidic. If mixed with butter, it may further aggravate the symptoms of acidity and cause heartburn.

What is the best time to eat corn?

Corn can be a healthy addition to any meal of the day. However, many prefer it as an evening snack.

Hope you liked our post on side effects of corn. Do you like corn? How do you like to eat your corn-roasted, boiled or as a topping? Share with us.


Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. Corn-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis
  2. The paleopathology of Pellagra Investigating the impact of prehistoric and historic dietary transitions to maize
  3. Effects of corn processing on the glycaemic and insulinaemic responses in horses
  4. Indigestion
  5. Pellagra
  6. Evaluation of the gastrointestinal tolerability of corn starch fiber a novel dietary fiber in two independent randomized double-blind crossover studies in healthy men and women
  7. Dental Calculi
  8. Corn phytochemicals and their health benefits
  9. Allergy as a causative factor of fatigue irritabilityand behavior problems of children
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Tanya is an ISSA certified Specialist in Fitness & Nutrition. She specializes in writing articles on ingredients that benefit skin,... more

Dr. Pallavi Srivastava

(PG Diploma in Sports Science & Fitness Nutrition)
Pallavi Srivastava is a Clinical Nutritionist with over 13 years of experience and the founder of Q-Slim Fitness Studio. She... more