Microwave popcorn reminders

Who doesn't love popcorn? Everyone in my family loves it. I always have a bag ready in the fridge (I read before that corn kernels pop better when kept in a cool place) for a quick snack while working, for a movie marathon with the boys, or when unexpected guests with kids arrive. Like my niece Tiki, for instance, who can eat a whole bag by herself.

She doesn't even want to share!

Popcorn is considered as a healthy snack especially if you cook it the old-fashioned way, meaning in a pan with little oil and covered with a lid. In the States, stove top popcorn poppers can be found in almost every popcorn supplies store. What I used though was a typical kaserola with handles on the side that I hold to swing it sideways and cook the kernels evenly. I did this before when I still had all the time in world to cook snacks for my boy. Ok, that's aside from the fact that we didn't have a microwave oven before, LOL! Now that we have one and I'm often busy on my online writing tasks, I just pop a bag in the oven and wait for two minutes.

People say that microwave popcorn is bad. So far, I found out from sources in the Internet that microwave popcorn only becomes harmful while the bag is being opened. An article from Oprah.com tells of a man who developed a lung disease from directly inhaling the steam of a freshly opened and cooked microwave oven. A substance called diacetyl is mixed to microwave popcorn to give it its buttery taste. While its safe to eat food with diacetyl, the diacetyl-loaded steam that comes out of a freshly cooked bag of microwave popcorn is toxic. Breathing in large amounts of that stuff causes "popcorn lung disease" or bronchiolotis obliterans.

Most microwave popcorn manufacturers no longer use diacetyl and these are the usual brands we buy such as Act II, Orville Redenbacher, and Jolly Time. Even so, experts advise consumers to let the bag cool first before opening or open the bag under a stove exhaust fan to avoid inhaling its steam.

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