With the release of the Twilight sequel, New Moon and anticipation of James Camerons Avatar, the holiday movie season is in full swing.
Yet, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest the true horror story may not be showing on the big screen but taking place in your popcorn bucket.
The organizations lab test of popcorn obtained at the nations three largest movie chains found that most movie theater popcorn has enough saturated fat to make a cardiologist cringe.
In fact, a Regal theater medium popcorn contains 60 grams of saturated fat – three whole days worth of artery clogging fat. This is even before you add more butter to the popcorn from the butter dispensers
The culprit coconut oil. Two of the nations top three theater chains, Regal and AMC cook their popcorn in highly saturated coconut oil. Coconut oil is 90% saturated. Lard, in comparison, is 40% saturated.
Cinemark by contrast cooks its popcorn in non-hydrogenated canola oil. This explains why a large tub of popcorn at AMC contains 57 grams of saturated fat while the same size tub at Cinemark contains only 4 grams of saturated fat.
Yet, saturated fat is just the first act of this movie theater horror story. A drink and a popcorn at a movie theater contains more calories than most meals. A medium popcorn and soda at Regal cinemas packs on nearly 1600 calories more than half of most peoples daily calorie needs.
So how do you protect your heart and your waistline, not to mention your pocket book?
Call me cheap or call me frugal, I just skip the popcorn and soda all together saving nearly $11.50 per trip to the movie theater.
My secret I eat a bag of popcorn at home just prior to going to the theater. In just 4 minutes my hot air popper cooks nutritious popcorn without the saturated fat. And its just 12 cents a serving. By time Ive hit the movies my popcorn craving has been tamed.
So do you feast on movie popcorn, sneak in your own snacks, or do you have another alternative?