Popcorns are a convenient fast food that many people take as a snack. They can keep you going, especially when watching a movie or topping your dinner. However, their carb content is a worry for keto dieters.
Popcorns are produced by heating dried corn kernels in either water or cooking oil which pop edible puffs. Air-popped popcorn in particular, is a healthy and nutritious snack and a great source of beneficial vitamins, carbs, minerals, and fiber. Since popcorns are high carbs, people on the keto diet wonder if it is good for them. The ketogenic or keto diet, is a type of dieting that is low in carbs but high in fat. This article reviews the nutrition of popcorn, the keto diet, and whether they can rhyme.
What Is Popcorn?
Dried corn kernels contain water inside them. When they are heated, the water expand and explode the kernels into edible puffs – popcorn. For many centuries, popcorn has been a popular snack for many people and it gets its root in the Americas. In fact, according to the National Institutes of Health, popcorn was eaten in Peru about six centuries ago. Today, popcorn has spread all over the world and nearly everybody eats it. You can make it on the stovetop, microwave, or air popper. You can also find it as a readily popped alternative. Commonly, popcorn is flavored with melted butter and salt, but even spices, herbs, chocolate, cheese, or any other seasoning can work better.
The Nutrition of Popcorn
Many people consider corn to be a vegetable. But popcorn is whole grain as it contains germ, endosperm, and bran. These parts of the grain are entirely intact from the time of harvesting the grains from a mature corn plant. Several studies have found that eating whole grains can reduce your risk of many chronic diseases, such as cancer, high blood pressure, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even death. This is true because whole grains are loaded with many nutrients that are important for your health, including vitamins, fiber, minerals, and powerful plant compounds. Popcorn also contains beneficial nutrients just like other whole grains. As per the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), 24 g of air-popped popcorn provides 90 calories, 1 g of fiber, 3 g of protein, 18 g of carbs, 4 g of fiber, 9 percent of the recommended daily value (RDV) for magnesium, 9 percent of the RDV for phosphorus, 12 percent of the RDV for manganese, and 6 percent of the RDV for zinc. Popcorn is a great source of fiber and for this reason it promotes feelings of fullness. It also contains decent amounts of minerals like manganese, phosphorus, zinc, and magnesium. In addition, popcorn is also high in antioxidants, including polyphenols that can protect your cells from damages caused by free radicals. Studies suggest that polyphenols can also lower the risk of certain cancer, as well as many chronic diseases.
What Is Keto Diet?
The ketogenic diet requires that you drastically cut back on your carb intake and increase that of fat. Given that your body will be deprived of carbs – the main source of energy – it will shift to metabolizing fats to release byproducts called ketones, which will serve as an immediate source of energy. As a result, your body will go into a metabolic state called ketosis. The ketogenic diet has long been used to manage seizures, especially in children with epilepsy. Studies suggests that the keto diet can aid weight loss, improve insulin sensitivity, lower cholesterol levels, and improve blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes. Those on the keto diet are expected to achieve and always maintain ketosis. To do this, all you need to do is consume less than 50 g of carbs every day – though some enthusiasts may reduce carbs intake even more. The low-carb foods allowed in the keto diet, include fatty fish, eggs, meats, nuts, seeds, olive oil, avocados, as well as broccoli, cauliflower, and bell peppers among other non-starchy vegetables. According to proponents of the keto diet, the carb referred to here is net carbs, which is calculated by subtracting fiber in grams from total crabs in grams in a particular food. Based on this assumption, most whole grains and foods rich in fiber have fewer net carbs than other foods without much fiber for example refined grains.
Can Popcorn Fit in In The Keto Diet
Apparently, the keto diet can be individualized and the amount of keto may differ from one person to another. For this reason, popcorn may be eaten in a keto diet. For example, air-popped popcorn is typically 3 cups weighing 24 g and delivers 18 g of total carbs and 4 g of fiber. This translates to 14 g of net carbs. Popcorn can be eaten on a keto diet where the daily limit net carbs is 50 g. Even in strictly restricted versions of carb intake, popcorn can still fit easily. What’s more, popcorn packs only a few numbers of calories, with one serving delivering 90 calories. This makes it better for people on the keto diet purposely for weight loss. The only problem is that a 24-gram serving may occupy a large portion of your carb allotment. That said, if you want peace with popcorns on the keto diet, you may need to limit your intake of foods high in carbs. This will help you remain in the desired net carb limit. Foods like bread and chips are high in carbs with little fiber, while popcorn contains more fiber with fewer net carbs. It would thus help to eat popcorn and other whole grains. Portion size also is of importance when it comes to achieving and maintaining ketosis. You can restrain your portion size by adding coconut oil or butter oil to popcorn.
Popcorn is a popular snack that has been used for over six centuries. It contains well-balanced nutrients, such as fiber and carbs, thus fewer net carbs. Since keto dieters consider eating few net carbs per day, popcorns can easily fit in the keto diet without going overboard with carb consumption.