Why Popcorn is the Best Snack

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Why Popcorn is the Best Snack

Carter Voss, editor

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Your favorite movie just came out into theaters. You walk up to the stands, buy two tickets, one for you and one for your significant other. The cashier hands you two torn tickets and you walk into the theater. The smell of fresh popcorn circulates in the air. You walk up the counter, order a large coke and what? (Open Your Bags) Popcorn, Right! Now Maria you’re a little disappointed? You were expected the yummy delicious snack everyone else got. Well, don’t you want chips at a movie? No, you want popcorn!

Popcorn is a healthy, affordable and comes in many varieties for all to enjoy. Today, I would like to inform you on this upcoming delicious popped snack. As an avid popcorn enthusiast, I have tried many popcorns from across the country and because of this I have the information to tell you why popcorn is the best snack. We all love a healthy, cheap and tasty snack. Gluten free? Dairy free? Sugar free? Yes, popcorn has all varieties for everyone to enjoy.

Today, I will discuss the nutritional information, the affordability, and the many varieties of popcorn.  

First, I will discuss the healthy forms of popcorn.

As seen through the super market aisles, popcorn packages promote an overall healthier lifestyle. As seen on the various packages with sayings “Whole grain,” “Gluten Free,” “50 percent less fat” and many other sayings, many brands also promote the calorie count per cup. Some brands are even named in this manner  make their products seem healthier.  The unique part of these branding slogans and names are that they are truthful. Popcorn is in fact whole grain, gluten free and has less at (depending on flavors added).  

Whole grains: As mentioned before popcorn is a whole grain, while it isn’t as fiber packed as oats or whole wheat breads it is in act grain. Studies show that three servings of whole grains are linked to 22 percent reduction in cardiovascular disease risk and a 15 percent reduction in the risk of cancer.  

Gluten free: Many people day struggle with a gluten allergy. The allergy causes for most people extreme stomach problems, bowl problems as well as in extreme cases rashes on skin. Popcorn gives people with a gluten allergy a new snack that still fulfills the cravings for a sweet or salty snack.  

Less fat: Probably the most noticeably difference between popcorn and other snacks is the way it makes you feel after eating it. Popcorns, usually popped in air or light oils do not leave people feeling nasty or bloated inside after eating. Other snacks, such as chips, which are high in fats leave snackers feeling oily, bloated and fat after consuming only a small portion. (Cynthia Roberts)  But when discussing the health benefits of popcorn, we must also consider the alternative: chips.

Chips vary in nutritional value but the majority are friend in oils, which cause unnecessary build ups of fat in the body and leave you feeling fat. Chips can however be baked or air popped which does overall help improve the chips bad reputation.  

The health information of popcorn speaks for itself, but how much does it cost? 

54 percent of Americans surveyed in 2016 had purchased ready to eat popcorn in the previous six months with sales topping $1 billion dollars. That’s a 100 percent growth from the year before. Popcorn is by the far one of the most popular kinds of snacks at the grocery store. While looking for popcorn there are multiple different prices ranges to look for popcorn.  The first being microwave or unpopped popcorn. Unpopped popcorn usually being the cheapest, ranges from $1-$5 at your local grocery store. These come in many varies and give you a chance to make your own hot and fresh.  The second being pre-popped popcorn. This is the kind that comes in large bags pre-popped by the manufacturer. The prices of these range from $3-$7. The accessibility of these popcorns is what makes them better for consumers because no heating is required.  Finally, the dreaded movie popcorn. Movie theater popcorn for some reason is the best, without a doubt movie snack. But with that comes high prices. Prices for a box of popcorn range from $8-$40 depending on size and location of theater. Carbondale prices range from $8-$25 depending on which size and meal option you choose. In Chicago, however prices are higher and start at $20. To consider however, the chip industry offers a less tasty but more affordable products. Chips from 50 cents to $5 depending on size o the bag.  

But with all these numbers and facts, what kind of popcorn is available.  

Finally, to discuss the fun part. All the varieties and flavors.  First, there are three main types of kernels. White yellow and black all three have different textures and underlying flavor. White is soft and mellow tasting, yellow is firm and starchy, black is very tender and small.  Second, the method of popping determines the second overall flavor of the corn. Air popped gives no flavor to the kernel, oil popped gives kernels an oily salty taste and butter popped, makes the kernels taste like butter. Finally, the various flavors: Sea salt, butter, butter lovers, extreme butter, movie butter, kettle, sweet, caramel with nuts, caramel without nuts, white cheddar, jalapeno, hot cheddar, white/plain, caramel cheddar, butter kettle, cheddar Parmesan, ranch. The popcorn industry recently released a way for popcorn lovers to create their own. At instituteofflavor.com you can go and explore and make your own popcorn flavor. Your entry can then be entered into a contest, the winner gets a lifetime supply of popcorn. Finally, chips do offer many of the same and more flavors. Chips can be fried, popped, or baked. With flavors such as bbq, ranch, cheddar, plain, hot cheddar, and many many more.  

In conclusion, I encourage all of you today to try some popcorn for a healthier, affordable and tasty option. I hope you consider this information I presented you with today when purchasing your next salty snack.