General Nutrition Popcorn

Is Popcorn A Healthy Snack?

Popcorn can either be good or bad for a person's health, depending on what goes into making it. On its own, without any added sugar or salt, popcorn makes a nutritious, healthful snack.
Popcorn is a type of corn kernel that, when people heat it, it pops to become light and fluffy. Popcorn contains plenty of nutrients and vitamins when people make it in the right way.

In this article, we look at how popcorn can be a healthful snack, its nutritional values and benefits, and which types are the most healthful. We also look at how people can make their own healthful, air-popped popcorn at home.

Is popcorn healthful?

  1. Popcorn contains vitamins and minerals and is high in fiber.
  2. Popcorn can be healthful when manufacturers or individuals prepare it the best way.
  3. Popcorn is a whole grain, which is a group of foods that help boost heart health. It has the following nutritional benefits:
  4. high in fiber
  5. contains protein
  6. contains vitamins and minerals
  7. low in fat and sugar
  8. contains no cholesterol

Air-popped popcorn with no oil provides the best health benefits. People can air-pop popcorn by heating popcorn kernels in a popcorn maker or on a stovetop.

Depending on its preparation, popcorn can be a healthful snack. When air-popped, unsweetened, and unsalted popcorn contains plenty of fiber, vitamins, and minerals that the body needs. Checking the labels of foods before buying them and preparing ingredients at home can help people make more healthful dietary choices.

Many people will be more used to eating popcorn at the cinema with toppings or flavorings. These added extras tend to have little nutritional value. Microwave popcorn may also contain additives, and the bags can have contaminants.


Premade popcorn often contains a high level of salt, or sodium. Eating too much sodium can cause high blood pressure and lead to other health complications. Some brands also include a lot of sugar.


These added ingredients mean that, while popcorn does have lots of health attributes, people should choose specific types and include it as part of a healthful diet. However, eating sweetened or salted popcorn as a treat, from time to time, will usually not do any harm.

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