Movie Popcorn = 3 Quarter Pounders, Plus Butter

It's as unhealthy as it was 15 years ago
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 19, 2009 4:10 PM CST
Ellen Gifford, left, sits with popcorn and a soda inside the AMC Burbank 16 theater in Burbank, Calif., Monday, Sept. 22, 2008.   (AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian)
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(Newser) – Figure 1,600 calories, 60 grams of saturated fat, and 980 milligrams of sodium—that’s what you’re eating when you scarf down a medium helping of movie popcorn at the nation's biggest theater chain. Add a soda and it’s the equivalent of eating a pound of baby back ribs and a scoop of ice cream, or three Quarter Pounders with a stick and a half of butter, an analysis by a nutrition watchdog group says.

In many cases, calorie counts are significantly higher than those posted in theaters. Regal, the No. 1 chain, and AMC cook their popcorn in coconut oil, which is 90% saturated fat, while Cinemark gets better grades—relatively speaking—for using canola oil, reports the LA Times.