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Is Popcorn a Junk Food?

Is Popcorn a Junk Food?

Many people mistake popcorn for junk food, but it can be a healthy snack depending on how it is prepared. Because it is high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, many people use popcorn as a healthy substitute for empty-calorie snacks.

However, the method of popcorn preparation is critical to consuming popcorn as a healthy snack. Healthy popcorn can be made by air-popping or cooking it in a bit of avocado, walnut, or extra virgin olive oil.

Cooking popcorn in oil significantly impacts its fat content. For example, a cup of air-popped popcorn contains 31 calories, compared to 41 calories in a cup of oil-popped popcorn, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Regular popcorn with seasonings such as salt, cheese, butter, kettle popcorn, and gourmet popcorn has many more calories.

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