Popcorn–the healthy and the unhealthy!

The healthy facts:

Popcorn is a whole grain that contains 5 grams of fiber in 4 cups of popped corn!  Fiber helps to prevent disease!

One cup of air-popped popcorn has only 30 calories!

Studies show that popcorn is high in polyphenols, which are antioxidants that help to reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers!

As a rule, popcorn is not genetically modified like most non-organic corn.

The unhealthy facts:

Diacetyl, a chemical used in the artificial butter flavoring of microwave popcorn, is toxic!

The bags of most microwave popcorn are coated with PFCs.  These chemicals have been shown to suppress the immune systems of children and cause cancer in animals.

The popcorn industry is using bee-killing insecticides known as neonics on their seeds!  Not only do these chemicals kill bees, they expose popcorn lovers to more health-compromising toxins.

Two big-name brands using these harmful chemicals on their popcorn seeds are Pop Secret and Pop Weaver.  For more information about this problem, check out this website:  www.pollinatorsandyourplate.org

Healthier ways to consume popcorn:

Buy organic popping corn.  Heat some virgin coconut oil in a stainless steel pot on the stove.  Cover the bottom of your pot with a layer of popcorn.  Cover pot and shake over high heat until it stops popping.

I shake a little unrefined sea salt that still contains minerals (I buy mine from Nature’s Sunshine) or some nutritional yeast, which contains B-vitamins and tastes good!  Don’t confuse it with brewer’s yeast, which can contribute to yeast overgrowth in the body.

I make this healthier sweet treat with leftover popped corn:

Melt 4 tablespoons of unsalted organic butter with 4 tablespoons of raw honey.  Pour over 8 cups of popped corn (salted or unsalted), and mix to coat.  You can always add some nuts at this point, if desired.

Spread the mixture in a single layer onto a large baking pan, and bake at 275 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  Stir after 10 minutes and then once every 5 minutes until done.  Let cool on pan.  So easy and so good!

Keep learning to be healthy!

Lisa Hernandez, Certified Nutritionist & Natural Health Care Coach

1 Corinthians 10:31–“Whatever you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for God’s glory!”



This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat disease.  It does not take the place of any medical care that you may need.



2 thoughts on “Popcorn–the healthy and the unhealthy!

  1. Lisa, Are there any already popped popcorn that you would recommend. Popcorn seems to be the rage now and the already popped bags are everywhere. Just curious if you have researched a brand from Sprouts/TJ/ Whole foods that might be ok? Let me know if you have. Thank you. Dana

    • Randall’s carries ‘O’ Organics popped corn. There are other brands, but you need to read the ingredients to look for healthy oils, sea salt, and avoid non-food additives. Many packaged varieties use canola and/or safflower oils, so it’s beneficial to buy them organic to avoid GMOs, and to look for expeller-pressed on the label. This means that chemicals were not used in the oil extraction process.

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