Sit Back Relax and Enjoy the Show

8 Aug

When Allison asked me to impart some wisdom on the perils of movie theater treats, my initial thought was that everyone knows movie theater popcorn is terribly unhealthy and people are generally aware that candy isn’t such a great choice either. But on a recent visit to the theater, I saw the snaking line from the concession stand practically to the door. Additionally I saw massive buckets of saturated fat-laden popcorn almost concealing their owner’s heads, each walking into the auditorium one after the next. I now feel like I may have something to contribute to the movie-goers among us!

***Disclaimer ***this information may disturb you! 

The Los Angeles Times (http://articles.latimes.com/2011/mar/23/business/la-fi-ct-popcorn-20110323)  recently reported that a 2009 survey based on laboratory tests commissioned by the Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington found that one large popcorn has the following nutritional information:

Theater

Calories

Calories W/ Butter

Fat (g)

Saturated Fat (g)

Regal

1,200

1,460

0

60

AMC

1,030

NA

NA

57

Cinemark

(Who uses canola oil)

910

NA

 4

NA

I would simply say to stay away from movie popcorn. Instead try the following:

Item / Company

Serving Size

Calories

Fat (g)

Saturated Fat (g)

Orville Redenbacher’s Natural Simply Salted popcorn

5.5 cups

120

5

2.5

SkinnyPop popcorn

5 cups

195

2.5

0

If chocolate and candy are what you crave, I am in your corner! Like Allison, I have a serious sweet tooth and there are certainly better things to chomp down on instead of movie theater options.

The chart below contains the candy at my local theater, I checked the labels and here is what I saw:

Candy

Calories

Fat (g)

Saturated Fat (g)

Sugar (g)

Sour patch kids

150

0

0

26

Junior Mints

170

3

2.5

32

Raisnets

190

8

5

27

Nerds

60

0

0

14

Reeses Pieces

190

9

7

21

Skittles

240

2.5

2.5

44

Sno Caps

180

8

5

24

Cookie Dough bites

200

10

7

20

Swedish Fish

150

0

0

31

Twizzlers

240

1

0

29

* Note this information is per serving (not per package). They each have different amounts of candy per serving. For example, one serving of Swedish Fish is a mere 7 pieces, a serving of Reeses Pieces is 51 pieces.

I went to my grocery store to try and come up with some better options and here is some advice. You must BYOS (bring your own snack) this will save your waistband and be easier on your wallet as well.  Here are some suggestions

Item / Company

Serving Size

Calories

Fat (g)

Saturated Fat (g)

Sugar (g)

Pretzel M&Ms

Small packet

150

5

3

16

Pop Chips Sea Salt and Vinegar

1 bag

100

3

0

1

There are also a whole host of new Nabisco 100 calorie packs for those of us who only need small amount to satisfy. I came across yogurt covered pretzel rings, Oreo Thin Crisps and Chips Ahoy! Thin Crisps, YUM!

Another way to save calories at the theater is to go to a show at dinnertime and bring your meal along with you. I have been known to shamelessly eat a chopped salad in the dark. Eating an actual meal at the movies prevents consuming additional calories on top of what you would typically take in. I also recommend a large hot drink like coffee or tea to occupy your hands and mouths (just make sure you check out the Run Pee iPhone application so you know when to take your bathroom breaks!)

Happy Snacking!

Lindsay

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One Response to “Sit Back Relax and Enjoy the Show”

  1. alison nakash August 9, 2011 at 2:56 pm #

    Very informative! No more movie popcorn for me!

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