Americans consume some 16 billion quarts of this whole grain, good-for-you treat. That's 52 quarts per man, woman and child.
Compared to most snack foods, popcorn
is low in calories. Air-popped popcorn has only 31 calories per cup.
Oil-popped is only 55 per cup.
Popcorn ia a type of maize (or com), a member of the grass family, and is scientifically known as Zea mays everta.
Of the 6 types of maize/corn -- pod, sweet, flour, dent, flint and popcorn -- only popcorn pops.
Popcorn is a whole-grain. It is made up of three components: the germ, endosperm and pericarp (also known as the hull).
Popcorn needs between 13.5-14% moisture to pop.
Popcorn differs from other types of
maize/corn in that it has a thicker pericarp/hull. The hull allows
pressure from the heated water to build and eventually bursts open. the
inside starch becomes gelatinous while being heated; when the hull
bursts, the gelatinized starch spills out and cools, giving it its
familiar popcorn shape.
Most U.S. popcorn is grown in the Midwest, primarily in Indiana, Nebraska, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky and Missouri.
National Popcorn Day is celebrated on the 19th of January.
Caramel Popcorn Day is celebrated on the 7th of April.
National Popcorn Poppin' Month is celebrated in October.
Popcorn is a whole grain that contains 40 or more nutrients.
The germ in the popcorn kernel contains all of the B complex vitamins, plus vitamin E, Riboflavin and Thiamine.
Popcorn has more protein than any other cereal grain.
Popcorn has more iron than eggs, peanuts, spinach or roast beef.
The hull and outer layers are rich in iron, phosphorous and protein.
Popcorn has more phosphorous and fiber than potato chips, ice cream cones or pretzels.
Popcorn is a calorie counter's delight! Unbuttered popcorn only has between 25 and 55 calories per cup.
Popcorn, a well know "funfood", is considered a wholesome snack by leading medical associations and nutrition professionals:
The American Dental Association
recommends popcorn as a sugar-free snack. Popcorn is listed by the ADA
as a suggested sugar free, fat free and low=in-calories snack along with
several other notables such as apples, pears, celery, plain yogurt,
nuts and cheese.
The National Cancer Instiitute (NCI),
the federal government's cancer prevention agency, suggests fiber in
the diet to reduce the risk of some forms of cancer.
The American dietetic Association recommends popcorn as a high fiber snack food in their list of "10 Great Ways to Fiber Up!"
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research lists popcorn as a smart, low/no-sugar snack.
The American Diabetes Association and
the American Dietetic Association permit popcorn as a starch exchange
on weight-control diets.
The Feingold Diet for hyperactive children permits popcorn because it contains no artificial additives.
Because popcorn contributes to the
overall health andmaintenance of the body, the American Diabetes
Association permit popcorn as a break exchange on weight control diets.
Popcorn is listed third out of a list of 11 as Eleven Things That Don't Cause Cancer.
Popcorn aids digestion by providing necessary roughage, also know as fiber.