Eating corn on the cob is one way to help meet your daily veggie requirements. Corn on the cob offers a variety of essential nutrients your body requires daily to function properly. Because corn contains low amounts of other nutrients, however, eat it in moderation as part of a well-balanced meal plan.
Eating corn on the cob can fill you up without the extra calories. Corn on a medium-size cob contains about 59 calories, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. In comparison, the USDA reports that 1 cup of corn kernels provides 155 calories. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute estimates adult men need about 2,000 to 3,000 calories daily, while women often require 1,600 to 2,400 calories per day for healthy weight maintenance.
Carbs, Protein and Fat
Corn on the cob mainly contains carbs, including fiber, but little protein and fat. A medium-size corn on the cob contains just 2 grams of protein and less than 1 gram of fat, but provides 14 grams of carbohydrates -- including 2 grams of dietary fiber. The Institute of Medicine recommends adults get 45 percent to 65 percent of their calories from carbs, which equates to 225 to 325 grams of carbs daily when eating 2,000 calories per day. Fiber recommendations are 38 grams daily for men and 25 grams per day for women, notes the publication "Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010."
Minor Amounts of Micronutrients
Although corn isn’t rich in micronutrients, a variety of vitamins and minerals are present in corn on the cob. These include potassium, phosphorous, magnesium and folate. Corn also contains a small amount of vitamin A. Eating a medium-size corn on the cob, however, isn’t enough to fully meet any of the micronutrient recommended dietary allowances or adequate intakes provided by the Institute of Medicine.
The number of vegetables, including corn, you should eat daily is based on your total daily calorie needs. For example, if your calorie requirement for healthy weight management is 2,000 calories daily, aim to consume 2.5 cups of vegetables each day, suggests "Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010." A 1-cup equivalent from the veggie group equals 1 cup of cooked corn, which is approximately two medium-size ears of corn on the cob.
- U.S. Department of Agriculture National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Corn, Sweet, Yellow, Frozen, Kernels on Cob, Cooked, Boiled, Drained, without Salt
- National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: Balance Food and Activity
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes: Macronutrients
- U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs): Recommended Dietary Allowances and Adequate Intakes, Vitamins