popcorn healthy snack

Is Popcorn A Good Snack For Those Looking To Lose Weight?

It can be hard to lose weight, especially as you get older and your metabolism starts to slow down, which makes your body take longer to burn off that excess fat. You will either have to make a choice to start eating less, eating healthier foods, or spending your whole day on the treadmill because you ate something with a modicum of flavor.

Maintaining your figure doesn’t have to be a nightmare like this. You will find that there are plenty of tasty foods that you can eat and still keep your waistline in check, including the food that we will be discussing today. We will take a look at the nutrition of everyone’s favorite popped snack: popcorn.

How Many Calories In Popcorn?

There is no clear answer to this question because it depends on many factors .This is due to the vast range of different types of popcorn,various methods used to cook it and the added toppings.  

Let's take a look at the calories contained in different types of popcorn.  The first variety is air-popped white popcorn without butter. It is quite healthy, there are approximately 60 calories in two cups. Plus, it packs approximately 2 grams of fiber which is filling. 

When white popcorn is popped in oil, however, it increase to about 100 calories per two cups. This is due to the increased fat from the oil. This additional oil  increases the fat content from one gram of fat per two cups to six grams of fat per two cups.

How Many Calories In Popcorn

Next on the list is microwaved popcorn, which is even less healthy than real oil-popped popcorn. The calories increase to approximately 125 per two cups. Microwave popcorn has more fat and less protein than both its air-popped and oil-popped counterparts.

Popcorn which is popped in oil and then covered in butter has even more calories and fat. This is the worst kind of popcorn preparation if you're trying to watch your weight when it comes to calorie density. There are 150 calories per two cups of popcorn. 

The type of popcorn which we would consider the most detrimental to weight loss is popcorn coated in caramel. It has a whopping 360 calories per two cups, which makes it ridiculously fattening for how full it makes you feel. This is due to the carbs, which increase from 12 grams to 66 grams per two cups.

Is Popcorn Healthy?

This question is just as hard to answer as the question, "Is popcorn bad for you?" You will find that it depends on the type of popcorn that you decide to eat. If you are looking to lose weight, you should opt for air-popped popcorn with a reasonable amount of salt and no butter because it adds more calories to the food. 

healthy popcorn

You will also find that popcorn which is popped in oil is not much different nutritionally than the air-popped variety, 

Is Popcorn Fattening?

There are a few types of popcorn that you will want to stay away from at all costs when you are trying to lose weight. When you are at the theatre and you have a choice to add butter to your popcorn, it would be best to decline. That “butter” is most likely not butter at all. The topping is usually made of partially hydrogenated soybean oil and other chemicals to replicate that great "buttery taste".  In addition, it usually is doled outquite liberally.

Oil-popped popcorn, in larger amounts, with a lot of salt, can be rather unhealthy, as well. While salt isn’t fattening, you will find that consuming too much sodium makes your cardiovascular system less healthy by raising your blood pressure. Higher blood pressure significantly increases your risk of a heart attack.

Is Popcorn Fattening

However, the worst culprit in terms of unhealthiness is caramel-covered popcorn, which is about six times more fattening than your typical air-popped popcorn. This dessert snack should be reserved for special occasions, as too much of it will increase your calorie intake significantly. Consequently, adding the pounds! 


Popcorn is not universally healthy or fattening. You will find that it depends on the way that it is prepared and the toppings served on it.  If you are trying to lose weight, stay away from oil-popped popcorn and popcorn which is covered with either butter or caramel. These added ingredients just increase your caloric intake. Popcorn prepared in an air popper can be quite tasty and filling. 

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