The Healthiest Snack
For decades people have been noshing on popcorn as a healthy alternative to other high fat/calorie indulgences. Numerous blogs are posted, articles are written, and weight loss support groups converse about the benefits of the air-popped treat.
Has anyone ever mentioned that popcorn may be healthier than some veggies?
Joe will tell you. Joe Vinson is a professor of chemistry at the University of Scranton who has so graciously helped many women justify the need for chocolate, by identifying the health benefits almost a decade ago.
According to Vinson's research, popcorn is heavy in antioxidants called polyphenols. Since popcorn is only about 4 percent water — compared to 90 percent for many fruits and vegetables — the polyphenols are present in greater concentrations in popcorn. The same principle works for dried fruits, which also contain less water
After reading the fact that popcorn's dryness is actually a benefit, it makes me welcome that big glass of water I gulp down. I am also a big fan of whole grain snack for another reason. Popcorn is the only snack that is 100% unprocessed whole grain. Since the water content is extremely low, popcorn is able to retain 51% of the whole grain weight. One serving can provide more than 70% of the daily intake value for a whole grain. Judging how the average person only gets about half of that serving in a day, having a bowl of popcorn is looking a "whole" lot better.
Let's not forget the popping concept. How you pop your popcorn makes a huge difference. Air-popped versus microwave popped is substantially healthier. Microwave popcorn contains PFCs (perfluorinated compounds), says Joy Bauer, nutritionist expert for the Today show. PFCs "have been shown to suppress immune function and cause cancer in animals." Companies are slowly looking for a way to remove the chemical.
Amongst staying far from the microwave, movie theater popcorn is also out of the question. Slathering on oil, butter, and salt makes the snack so much more delectable, but did you know that Popcorn at the Movies Can Equal Three Cheeseburgers? This $12 snack can cost you 1600 calories and up to 60 grams of saturated fat. That is the amount of saturated fat in a stick of butter and the amount of calories in 2 sticks of butter. But we certainly will not be snacking on that at the movies.
What do you think about popcorn being the healthiest snack?