My staff and I often receive emails from our web visitors, asking us about the nutrition facts or nutritional benefits of kettle corn. Like almost all homemade or commercial snack foods, the nutritional value can vary wildly depending on the ingredient makeup of the certain variety of kettle corn that you are consuming. Due to the fact that there are hundreds, or even thousands of different ways to make kettle corn, the overall health benefits or the negative health factors are nowhere near to being universal across the board. In this short article, I will go into the health benefits and health pitfalls of kettle corn, as well as offer you tips as to how to make this tasty treat more healthy if you are making it yourself from home. Obviously delicious snack foods such as kettle corn do not have to be unhealthy. The important thing when consuming any snacks, is to be aware of what you are eating, that way you can avoid all the unhealthy ingredients.
As most of you are probably already aware, plain popped popcorn is quite a healthy snack food. The US Surgeon General designated plain homemade popcorn as a smart food, as it contains no cholesterol, but does have a lot of dietary fiber, protein, Thiamine or vitamin B1, Riboflavin or vitamin B2, and iron. It's also relatively low in calories, making it a great food to snack on if you're dieting or trying to slim down. Where plain popcorn can start to rack up negative overall health factors, is when you start adding things to it, such as excess amounts of oil, salt, butter, sugar, and other tasty but unhealthy ingredients. Out of all the types of kettle corn available on the market today, the most unhealthy varieties of kettle corn or popcorn, are heavily processed commercial types which contain tons of additives, trans fats, coloring, coconut oil, monosodium glutamate or MSG, excess corn syrup, excess salt, or similar ingredients.
With regard to most fresh popped kettle corn that you will purchase popped at your local farmers market, trade show, carnival, or fair, it's usually comprised of only four basic ingredients, making it quite a healthy treat overall. Those ingredients are popcorn obviously, vegetable oil, sugar, and salt. Most kettle corn does have a sweet and salty flavor, but you will rarely come across a variety that is totally coated in sugar, meaning that it still falls within the range of a light to medium sugar volume, when compared to other snack foods. And without all of those funky commercial additives and artificial flavors, fresh popped kettle isn't really all that bad for you comparatively. Now obviously huge volumes of vegetable oil, sugar, and salt is unhealthy, but like all snacks, kettle corn should be eaten in moderation. If you are diabetic or have high blood pressure, then you should absolutely ask your doctor about kettle corn before you decide to eat any.
If you are eating a well balanced diet, and occasionally snack on kettle corn, most nutritionists will tell you it's not all that bad as far as a snack choice is concerned. If you are however consuming huge volumes of it every day, then of course the excess sugar, salt, and vegetable oil will be unhealthy in that volume. If you want to really go the extra mile in making sure that all of your kettle corn is totally healthy, then pop it at home using extra virgin olive oil. For an all natural healthy sweetener, use organic bees honey or agave nectar. And when salting your homemade kettle corn, use organic Celtic sea salt, which is usually not near as processed and refined as regular commercial table or kosher salt, meaning it's cleaner for the body to digest. I hope that you found this short article helpful. If you have any further questions about the nutrition benefits or nutritional shortcomings of tasty kettle corn, then please feel free to email our staff, and we'll respond shortly.