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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Movie Madness?

Over the weekend, Jack and I did something we haven’t had a chance to do in a while. We went to the movies (Pan’s Labyrinth, which was absolutely amazing!). And yes, we did get popcorn! It’s hard to find reliable nutrition info about movie theatre popcorn, but a recent estimate I saw for unbuttered listed 55 calories per cup (size of a tennis ball), from about 4 grams of fat, 3 grams of carbohydrate, and 1 gram of protein.

In my opinion, unbuttered popcorn is the healthiest snack you can buy at the theatre. Popcorn is a whole grain, provides about a gram of fiber per cup, and if it’s popped using liquid oil, it should be low in saturated fat and free of trans fat. The trick is not eating a whole bucket! We paired ours with bottled water (thankfully that was an option). But as we walked away from the concession stand, I couldn’t help but wonder two things:
1) Will we see healthier options in the near future?
2) Do movie-goers really want healthier options?

When I was a kid, you could pretty much get popcorn, candy, and soda at a theatre, oh and maybe a hot dog. Lately I’ve seen nachos, pizza, ice cream, cookies, brownies and biscotti, and beverages ranging from icees to coffee drinks, beer, wine, and even hard liquor.

Will we ever see healthy finger foods and snacks in theatres across the country such as fresh fruit salad, fresh veggies with healthy dips, summer rolls, and baked sweet potato sticks? What do you think? And would you buy them? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Oh, and one last thing before I go - the return of fun facts:
-The first theatre in the U.S. specifically dedicated to showing movies was in New Orleans in 1896
-In 1907, you could see a flick for 5 cents!
-The first air-conditioned movie theatre opened in 1922
- The very first drive-in movie theatre opened in Camden, New Jersey in 1932
- The American Film Institute (AFI) ranked the following as the #1 all time movie quote, “Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn,” from Gone with the Wind, 1939
-AFI’s #1 movie song: Over the Rainbow from The Wizard of Oz, 1939
-AFI’s #1 movie villan: Dr. Hannibal Lecter from The Silence of the Lambs, 1991
-AFI’s #1 movie hero: Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird, 1962
-AFI’s #1 movie stars: Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn
-AFI’s #1 film: Citizen Kane, 1941 ("Rosebud….")

photo courtesy of Geek Philosopher
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About the Author


Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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