One of the modern culinary marvels is the ability to take something unhealthy and make it healthy. I see you cauliflower steak, meatless chorizo sausage, and dark chocolate.
Enter popcorn. It’s no secret that there are healthier versions of popcorn in your supermarket aisles, but we look at the puffy bags and think, “Okay, these aren’t that bad for you.”
The thing about popcorn is that, prepared and consumed the right way, it can be good for you.
Let’s explore the health benefits of popcorn and the healthiest ways to enjoy the snack.
1. It Can Aid in Weight Loss
A cup of regular air-popped popcorn contains 30 calories and is highly satiating.
The whole grain derivative is also rich in folate, Vitamin B, and fiber, improving general body metabolism and essential for weight loss.
However, you can undo the benefits of popcorn by adding decadent ingredients. Nix that. Instead, try healthier additives like cayenne pepper, onion powder, and cinnamon if you want some extra taste.
2. It Has the Potential to Keep Blood Sugar Levels in Check
Popcorn has fiber that controls insulin release and management, regulating blood sugar levels.
High fiber content lowers blood sugar, hence healthier living. Popcorn is even a recommended food for people who have diabetes. Don’t believe me? The American Dietetic Association defines 15 g of carbohydrates as the required amount for managing diabetes. 15g is equal to 3 cups of air-popped popcorn.
3. Minimizes Effects of Aging
I’m not going to claim that popcorn defies the unfortunate gravitational pull of our aging bodies.
But popcorn does contain our favorite compound that makes frequent cameo appearances on this blog. When I say ANTI, you say OXIDANT. ANTI!
Popcorn has polyphenols, which are antioxidants that may prevent sun-induced skin damage. Also, the same polyphenols fight a wide range of inflammation in your body, preventing joint pain.
A regular serving of popcorn, about 3 cups, contains tons of beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin that can boost your vision. That doesn’t mean you can achieve satellite-grade vision when snacking on bowls of popcorn, but it can help.
4. May Reduce Risk of Heart Disease
The fiber in popcorn is known to reduce levels of cholesterol in your body. Eating a diet rich in whole grains reduces your chances of developing heart disease. Popcorn is a whole grain since it has bran, endosome, and germ. That sounds like a law firm.
Also, the antioxidants fight free radicals, which cause cardiovascular complications.
5. Improves Digestive Health
Consumption of popcorn adds more dietary fiber to your body, which can improve gut health. There is limited research on how popcorn relieves constipation, but the results are evidence that it may help to incorporate more popcorn into your diet.
Your movie snack buddy has many health benefits, but the line between healthy popcorn and a dietary horror is thin. Once you glop on indulgent toppings, all bets are off. Eat responsibly.
That’s all. Thank you for reading.
We saved the best for last: 🚨SHAMELESS PLUG ALERT🚨 Check out our Family Movie Night gift basket with not just one type of popcorn, but three…and other goodies, too.