If you’re looking for something to snack on, try popcorn. According to a new study, popcorn has more antioxidants than some fruits and vegetables, causing many health experts to deem popcorn as the “king of snack foods”. Besides being naturally high in fiber and whole grains, popcorn boasts some powerful antioxidants. In the study, researchers examined the antioxidants known as polyphenols, antioxidants that can reverse damage done to the body by unstable molecules called free radicals. These compounds are found in a wide variety of plants and are prevalent in foods like apples, dates and green tea leaves. 90% of the polyphenols found in popcorn were found in the hull. You know, that piece of popcorn that gets stuck in your teeth. Yes, that’s the hull. The study wasn’t designed to measure health benefits.
Researchers aren’t sure as to how much of the polyphenols are absorbed and used by the body. This is certainly a victory for many popcorn lovers everywhere. Even though we aren’t sure as to exactly how many antioxidants are absorbed in the body from popcorn, we should assume that at least some are, if not, all. As long as you don’t sprinkle on the salt and add the butter, you have the perfect snack. Unlike popcorn, fruits and vegetables have a range of important vitamins and minerals. You should never substitute popcorn for your fruits and vegetables. However, if you’re thinking about eating some pretzels or chips, consider popcorn instead.