The Perils of Popping!!!

popcorn.jpg                                                                                                       I am not a fan of microwave ovens (and for a number of reasons) and continue to read about the negative aspects of ‘nuking’ foods.

Adding to my resolve this past week, I read a quote from the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, commenting on a food study that they completed.

According to their findings, microwaved broccoli lost an average of 86% of three major health-promoting antioxidants, while steamed broccoli spears lost ONLY 6%  !!!! If that’s the case with broccoli, it would seem likely that similar results would be expected with other foods too, would it not?

Having said all that, there is one exception I make in terms of ‘nuked’ edibles I regularly indulge in. Strange but true, I LOVE microwave popcorn! Hot and oh so yummy, no clean-up, quick and convenient. Unfortunately, there also appears to be a downside to microwaving popcorn, but in this case, it’s more about the actual food than the method of cooking.


As you probably already know, the ingredient list of the various brands/types of microwave popcorn vary a LOT and the amount of fats/oils, in particular saturated and trans fats can take a relatively healthy snack and turn it into something that is definitely not a ‘recommended munchie’.

We’ve tried several brands and the best of the bunch so far (according to me, Joe and the Mitz!!) has been the Shopper’s Life Brand reduced-fat type. Sorry, but I don’t think this is a brand available in the U.S., correct me if I’m wrong.  Great taste, fat content within reason and not a lot of chemical additives either.

One type of microwave ‘healthier’ variety popcorn NOT to waste your money on is: Orville’s Smart Pop. In a word, GROSS!!! This popcorn had a strange, unnatural flavor, weird texture, just plain bad!!! 0 Trans Fats, yes, Taste NO! 

Orville’s other offerings such as the ‘buttery’ varieties they manufacture don’t fare well on the ‘fat-o-meter’ with for example:  5 grams of trans fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, in just 1/2 a bag, for one of their ‘lighter’ Buttery varieties!!!

Some of the other brands to watch for: Betty Crocker-shame on you, really bad in terms of fat content!!! Act II- tasted great, but yikes……………….this one resulted in the strangest dreams, for me and for Joe too. The Mitz, no comment on this one LOL.

This really is a case of buyer beware and do read those labels.Fat content and additives vary so much, by brands and varieties. And as is the case in most snack foods, moderation is the key. 

Now, if we can only get the theatre owner’s trying to do something about the movie popcorn they are doling out. Read this article if you thought you were safe at the movies, munching away!!!

What is your favorite savory snack? Popcorn, nuts, trail mix….or something else? Do tell!   Happy Munching!        🙂


5 responses

  1. Lately, my weakness has been reduced fat crackers or pretzels with roasted red pepper hummus. I can’t seem to stop munching!!!!! And there is no nuking of any kind. Anything that is cooked gets to visit the oven rather than the microwave.

    We won’t comment on the amount of other food I consume that is microwaved, though. ::hanging head in shame::

  2. oh…I love microwave popcorn, too, but I AM using the trans-fat free, heart “healthy” – you know, there have to be trade-offs all around….I can’t eat the high-fat chips and such, so 97% fat-free popcorn is a much better choice (tho’ ideally I guess we shouldn’t need such snacks, at all, right? lololol!)
    Annie – I love that red pepper hummus, too (and the spicy hot pepper hummus, and the garlic hummus….) Have you tried it on crudites??? Yummy on baby carrots and red/green pepper strips! (but not bad on baked tortilla chips, either!)…

  3. Hi G,

    I love microwave popcorn, too, but lately have been munching more mixed nuts instead. Ahhhhhhh, cashews. 🙂

  4. I love ANY kind of popcaron. It’s my new obsession.

  5. Hmm, not sure what my favorite snack is. I’ll snack on anything as long as it’s healthy.
    I purchase my popcorn kernels plain (my daughter loves popcorn) and then I pop them
    on top of the stovetop or in an air popper. We both enjoy seeing the kernels form.

Thanks so much for your comments!

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