THE CLAIM

“Weight Watchers Endorsed Popcorn”

THE TRUTH

Although seriously flawed, the premise of Weight Watchers is quite simple. You’re given a daily allowance of points, and based on the point values that Weight Watchers has assigned to various foods, you’re supposed to stay within your limit. Their idea of eating smarter instead of eating less is commendable, but the low fat diet that their point system promotes isn’t so smart. Furthermore, having a daily limit encourages people to equate low point values with healthy choices.

According to the Weight Watchers point system, a regular 12 ounce beer is 3 points and a 4 ounce steak is 7 points. A 12 ounce steak, which is a fairly common size, is 21 points. Even despite the misguided dogma surrounding red meat, the fact that a 12 ounce steak is equivalent in points to 7 beers is something to think about. Apparently, Weight Watchers thinks that healthy eating is all about calories and completely ignores nutritional quality.

Jolly Time popcorn, which is coincidentally only one Weight Watchers point, makes some familiar claims. A single 34 gram serving contains 2 grams of fat which amounts to 6% of fat by weight. However, 20 of the 90 calories per serving are from fat which amounts to more than 22%. In regard to the 0 grams of trans fat, partially hydrogenated soybean oil is listed as the second ingredient with an asterisk admitting that it “adds a dietary insignificant amount of trans fat per serving.” Insignificant is not the same thing as zero.