Corn (Maize)


Corn (Maize) in TCM:

Explore the properties of Corn (Maize) according to Chinese
Nutrition and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM):

Temperature: neutral

Channels: LI, ST, KD

Flavors: sweet
Tonifies: qi

Special Properties:
resolves water accumulations

Special notes: In the USA today more than 90% of corn is genetically modified. The molecular structure of GMO corn is significantly different than corn used in ancient times. The information below applies to non-GMO corn only.

In terms of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Corn, also known as maize, is known for its ability to tonify qi. It also helps to resolve water accumulations.

In general the ancient Chinese medical texts cite that corn enters the Kidney, Large Intestine, and Stomach. The flavor of corn is sweet, and it is considered to be neutral in temperature.

Corn is known as a diuretic which nourishes the physical heart, influences the stomach, improves appetite, and helps regulate digestion. Corn may also help to promote healthy teeth and gums, tonify the kidney, and overcome sexual weaknesses. "Drink a tea decoction made from whole dried corn kernels to treat kidney disease (HWWF 465)".

Because corn is very low in Niacin, some ancient cultures developed diseases related to Niacin deficiency such as pellagra. When corn is prepared with lime, such as in Native American cultures, bodily absorption of niacin increases.

Fresh corn on the cob contains more enzymes, more vitamins, and is better suited to warmer persons with robust constitutions than dried corn.

Corn silk is a core Chinese herb known as Yu Mi Xu. Corn silk is highly diuretic and can be used as a tea infusion for urinary difficulty, high blood pressure, edema, kidney stones, and gallstones. Corn silk is neutral in thermal properties.

Blue corn is indigenous to southwestern America and was used by the Hopi and Navajo people as a staple. Blue corn is cool, sweet, and sour. It influences stomach and tonifies the kidneys. Blue corn contains 21% more protein, 50% more iron, 2x manganese, and 2x potassium compared to yellow or white varieties. When ground its blue sheen gives a special quality to any recipe.