Why is it called blue corn?

Answered by Jarrod Smith

Blue corn gets its name from its distinct deep blue-purple color. This unique hue is not just for aesthetics, but it is actually a result of its high anthocyanin content. Anthocyanins are a type of pigment that give plants and fruits their vibrant colors, and blue corn happens to have a particularly high concentration of them.

Anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid, which are known for their antioxidant properties. These antioxidants help protect the body from harmful free radicals, which can cause cellular damage and contribute to various diseases. Blue corn’s anthocyanin content is actually equal to or even greater than that of blueberries, which are often hailed as a superfood due to their high antioxidant capacity.

The rich anthocyanin content in blue corn not only gives it its beautiful color, but it also provides additional health benefits. Studies have shown that anthocyanins have anti-inflammatory effects and may help improve cardiovascular health. They have also been associated with a reduced risk of certain types of cancer and age-related macular degeneration.

In addition to its nutritional benefits, blue corn is also a versatile ingredient in cooking. It can be ground into blue cornmeal or used as a whole grain. Blue corn tortillas, chips, and even beer have become popular culinary creations that showcase the unique flavor and color of this corn variety.

Interestingly, blue corn is not a result of genetic modification or selective breeding. It is actually a natural variation of yellow corn, and its blue color is the result of specific genes that control the production of anthocyanins. While blue corn may have originated in the Americas, it is now cultivated in various parts of the world and has gained popularity for its nutritional value and culinary uses.

Blue corn gets its name from its deep blue-purple color, which is a result of its high anthocyanin content. This pigment not only gives blue corn its vibrant appearance but also provides it with a higher antioxidant capacity compared to yellow corn. Whether enjoyed in tortillas, chips, or other culinary creations, blue corn offers a nutritious and flavorful addition to the dining table.