It can be tempting to eat popcorn while at the movies. But it's important to understand Cineplex movie theater popcorn nutritional information — particularly if you frequent this establishment.
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While homemade popcorn is generally a fairly healthy snack, movie popcorn is a different beast altogether, so you may want to limit your portion size.
Read more: How Healthy is Popcorn?
Cineplex Odeon Popcorn Calories
Cineplex Odeon popcorn calories clock in at 590 for a small serving, per Cineplex.com. Bump this up to a large with butter and you're looking at 1,200 calories — the amount that some people consume for an entire day's worth of food.
However, calories can be reduced by asking for unbuttered popcorn. One small bag without butter has 400 calories. The calorie load can be further cut by sharing the popcorn with a friend.
A small bag of buttered popcorn also contains a whopping 43 grams of fat — 14.5 grams of which are saturated. Choosing the unbuttered kind of popcorn does not eliminate fat altogether. A small bag still contains 22 grams, although only 1.5 grams are saturated fats.
For even fewer calories, revisit your childhood. There are 230 calories in kids' popcorn at the movies — officially called the "mini tray" size at the Cineplex.
Count Carbs and Fiber
One small, Cineplex popcorn has 46 grams of carbohydrate in its approximately 7 cup serving. The relative importance of counting carbohydrates has been debated over the years. While some proponents favor a low carbohydrate diet for weight loss, an equal number authorities find this unhelpful.
Among its carbohydrate content, a small bag of popcorn provides 5 grams of fiber. This type of carb is important for bowel function and helps to reduce risk of heart disease and diabetes. According to Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, both children and adults need at least 20 to 30 grams of fiber per day.
A small Cineplex popcorn provides 25 percent of daily fiber at low end of this recommendation. A large serving provides 11 grams of fiber, meeting 55 percent of your daily fiber needs.
Get Some Protein
One small unbuttered Cineplex popcorn provides 7 grams of protein. According to the National Academies of Sciences, men need at least 56 grams of protein per day, while women need 46 grams.
An entire small bag of unbuttered popcorn satisfies 13 to 15 percent of the daily need for protein. Protein is important because many parts of your body, including hair, muscle, antibodies, enzymes and some hormones are all made from it.
Watch the Salt
One small bag Cineplex popcorn has 330 milligrams of sodium. The American Heart Association recommends that health people consume no more than 3,400 milligrams of this nutrient per day. People with risk factors for heart disease should limit their sodium intake even further, to 1,500 milligrams per day.
You won't be in danger of exceeding this limit by enjoying a small movie popcorn. But, choose the large size and your sodium intake skyrockets to 720 milligrams.
- American Heart Association: "How Much Sodium Should I Eat Per Day?"
- Cineplex.com: "Nutrition Information"
- Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health: "Fiber"
- National Academies of Sciences: "Macronutrients"
- USDA: Dietary Guidance - Chapter Six
- LA Times; Movie Popcorn is Still a Horror: Mary MacVean; Nov. 11, 2009