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Why is sweet corn not digested? © Getty Images

Why is sweet corn not digested?

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Sweetcorn is a complete softy on the inside! There would be no point in eating it if it wasn't.

Asked by: Judy Williamson, Fort William


Sweet corn is digested, otherwise there would be little point in eating it. The inside of each kernel is almost pure starch and is digested very readily. But it is surrounded by a cellulose husk and humans have no way to break down cellulose molecules.

If you swallow sweet corn, with or without chewing, some of the kernels may remain intact in the stomach and, although enzymes will diffuse in and nutrients diffuse out, the overall appearance of the kernel will remain very similar when it eventually emerges.

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Luis VillazonQ&A expert

Luis trained as a zoologist, but now works as a science and technology educator. In his spare time he builds 3D-printed robots, in the hope that he will be spared when the revolution inevitably comes.


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