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Is popcorn a good snack to eat every day? I use a butter spray on it which has 0 calories. It seems to fill me up so I feel less hungry. Is popcorn also a good source of fiber?
Popcorn can be a good choice for snacking, but popping it in oil will add a lot of calories. If you are going to eat it often as a snack, consider purchasing an air popper. This inexpensive appliance superheats the popcorn and pops it without oil so there's no extra calories. 1/4 cup of unpopped kernels will make about 8 cups of popped corn. Each cup of air popped popcorn has about 31 calories. A cup of regular microwave popcorn has about twice as many calories -- mostly from fat.
There's a fair amount of fiber in popcorn at about 1 gram per cup. A snack of 4 cups will be very filling, low in calories and high in fiber.
Thanks for writing,
Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP