Featured this week on Fiber Focus Friday is a food most people associate with movie going. Putting on a quick flick, grabbing a bowl of popcorn, eating some candy, and slurping on a soda, sounds like an awesome way to spend an evening doesn’t it?
However, I never would have said any of these foods could actually be healthy for you! Indeed, popcorn is actually decently high in fiber and protein while remaining low in calories.
KEEP IN MIND that popcorn that is loaded with butter is not something that the Fiber Guardian suggests, as this adds unnecessary fat and other junk to the mix.
As always, please comment with any questions or suggestions for future foods to be featured on Fiber Focus Friday! I truly desire for this post series to continue for quite a long time!
It my hope that by the end of this post you will have a better understanding of popcorn and will want to go out and by some for yourself to eat right NOW!
Without further ado, let us discuss popcorn in all its glory.
Popcorn Quick Fact Card
Choosing the Right Types of Popcorn
The best type of popcorn is plain white, popped from unflavored kernels over the stove or using a popcorn maker. This method might be slightly more time consuming, but it will help you avoid all of the negative aspects of microwave popcorn.
I am not sure if believe everything in the article linked to above regarding the problem with microwave, but the fact of that matter is that making your own popcorn is simply the best option.
How to Make Your Own Popcorn
Making your own popcorn is quite simple! Follow the easy instructions listed in this link to be able to quickly make your own popcorn for the enjoyment of your entire family!
If you have kids, they will love this snack, and you will feel good being able to show your kids a new and healthy snack to eat during movie time!
Where Did Popcorn Come From?
The oldest ears of corn ever found were discovered in a bat cave in West Central Mexico. This is obviously not Batman’s hideout, but I am sure that Dark Night probably enjoys his own popcorn every once in awhile!
For real though, Cachise Indians dating back to 2,500 BC were probably growing and eating popcorn. Before this, we can only guess at popcorns true origins, but it is safe to say that it was indeed part of the Cachise Indian diet.
How Much Fiber in Popcorn?
The fiber content of popcorn is 3.6 grams per 1 oz, which comes out to about 1 cup of popped kernels. This is enough to give you a significant boost to your daily fiber intake, and it is only a small part of your daily calorie intake at barely over 100!
Popcorn is definitely a high fiber food, and snacking on it every once in awhile is a great decision for your fiber needs!
Health Benefits of Popcorn
Popcorn has several health benefits which include:
- the concentration of polyphenols in popcorn is higher than that of most fruit. Polyphenols are a powerful antioxidant found in the hull of the popcorn and the more you of these you can get in your diet the better! They greatly aid the fight against osteoporosis, heart disease, and cancer.
- Popcorn is high in fiber, and as you may have guessed, fiber is a major contributer to weight loss and staying healthy!
- Popcorn is easy and fun to eat, and thus, it will be easier to fit it into your daily diet! This means you can eat healthy AND enjoy what you eat! This may come as a shocker to some of you, but this IS possible!
- Popcorn is also high in vitamin B, manganese, and magnesium which are all great vitamins and minerals that can aid you in your journey towards better health.
- Eating popcorn can slow the affects of aging due to the impressive amount of antioxidants which fight free radicals, a leading cause of age related symptoms.
The health benefits of popcorn are outstanding, and adding it to your snacking regime is an excellent idea!
Fun Facts About Popcorn
- The official snack of Illinois is Popcorn, and there has been an official popcorn day since 1958.
- Popcorn kernels have a popping range of about 3 feet in the air.
- It has more fiber than pretzels or potato chips at 3.6 grams per 1 oz.
- Unpopped popcorn kernels are actuslly called “Old Maids” or “Spinsters.”
- The popcorn business thrived during the Great Depression while other businesses failed.
- Americans eat around 17 billion quarts of popcorn every year which is enough to fill the Empire State Building 18 times.
- Most of the popcorn eaten around the world is grown in the United States and therefore Americans eat more popcorn than any other country.
How Do I Eat Popcorn
I do not often eat popcorn, as I don’t enjoy getting it stuck in my teeth. However, after doing this research, I am definitely looking to add it to my snack regime, as it is MUCH better for you than chips or french fries (actually french fries are quite possibly one of the worst foods you can eat)!
I also like the idea of making the popcorn myself, and I think this very doable and fun!
Other Awesome Popcorn Recipes Includes:
- Apple Pie Popcorn
- Healthier Glazed Mexican Chocolate Popcorn
- Healthy Apple Cinnamon Butterscotch Popcorn
Final Thoughts on Popcorn
While Popcorn is not my favorite snack, I definitely suggest it to anyone that wants to try a different approach to eating healthy! It may not be the absolute best food in the world, but it is obviously better for you than most people realize!
I wouldn’t have guessed that popcorn was a good source of fiber – the Healther Apple Cinnamon Butterscotch recipe looks delicious!
One food I’m kind of curious about are sweet potatoes – how do they rate up in terms of fiber?