Invented back in the 1800’s by the Native Americans in Mexico, popcorn is a snack rich in fiber and low in calories. The whole grain snack just has a gram of fat that is placed on the corn. It’s the toppings we chose for flavored popcorn that might turn it into an unhealthy snack with a lot of calories, fat and sodium.
One serving has five cups of popped popcorn with approximately two tablespoons of popcorn kernel yields. It makes up to 7 grams of fiber and 110 calories. That is not a lot of calories for munching in five cups of popcorn.
After its advent in New Mexico, it spread to China, India and eventually, North America too. European Explorers tested popcorn in North America, and that is how it trailed to Europe too. In those times, popcorn was used as food for breakfast. Many colonists loved having popcorn with sugar and cream as a type of cereal.
Likewise, Native Americans, the people who created it, popped corn by throwing the corn into a stone of fire. Eventually, as time passed, stone of fires were replaced by stone pots and clay. Many tribes still use these. With Science takes over, we now have microwaves for making popcorn.
Some Tips for a Healthy Popcorn Snack
- Avoid purchasing ready popcorn: When you purchase ready-made popcorn, you are really not aware of the materials used to make the popcorn. The quality of corn used or even the topping that has been used cannot be trusted. There might be retailers out there who might give you the lowest quality popcorn for the premium price. The diligent call to action should prompt you to buy a popcorn machine and to make your own personalized serving with whatever flavor you want to add in.
- Choose Organic Popcorn: Regular or non organic popcorn made it to the top ten lists of the FDA’s most commonly contaminated foods with chemicals and pesticides. Organic popcorn is healthier and free of pesticides and preservatives.
- Healthier Popcorn Toppings: Looking for low sodium popcorn or using unsalted versions of butter and margarines would maintain the essence of popcorn. Known for its low sodium, popcorn is healthy for your heart, provided that you do not add salt components or toppings in big quantities. Likewise, adding salt free chili or cayenne will give you the flavor you want to control the amount of sodium used. A popcorn maker is likely to mix the flavor and the topping, so there is least you have to worry about.
Be creative with trying healthy flavored oils, lower sodium alternatives and healthy seasonings to add flavor to your popcorn.