7 ways to have a healthy movie night

Need some snacks to go with your film? Ana Blanco offers some heart-healthy choices.

If you’ve been inspired by our science fiction becomes a reality feature, or you’re just planning a night of films with friends or family, you might be thinking about some snacks to complement your viewing.

It can be easy to consume large amounts of sugar and salt without even thinking about it, especially if your mind is on the film. But with a bit of advance planning and our healthy swaps, your film night doesn’t have to be bad for your waistline or your heart.

1. Instead of a slice of pizza

Chicken and pepper pitta pizzas 

Pizza and films go together like Laurel and Hardy or Batman and Robin. You don’t have to give pizza a miss altogether, but why not make your own to keep the fat levels down? Our pitta pizzas are really easy to make too.

2. Instead of popcorn

A bowl of popcorn

You don’t have to give popcorn a miss entirely, but be aware that some kinds you buy can be high in sugar and salt.

Our senior dietitian Victoria Taylor says: “The surest way to avoid hidden salt and sugar in your popcorn is to make your own. It’s easy to do and can be flavoured with spices like paprika or cinnamon rather than salt or mixed with dried fruit for a bit of sweetness without adding sugar or syrup.”

3. Instead of crisps

Hummus with vegetables 

Why not try breadsticks, rice cakes or crunchy vegetable sticks? You’ll probably have seen “healthier” crisps and snacks are available – get our dietitian’s take on these.

4. Instead of a bar of chocolate

Chocolate strawberry roulade 

If you fancy something sweet, how about a banana or some chunks of fresh pineapple? Or if you’ve got friends round and want to prepare a special treat, how about our chocolate strawberry roulade? (pictured)

5. Instead of biscuits

Summer strawberries 

Canned fruit such as peaches or pears in their own juice is a convenient alternative to biscuits. Or why not try one of our quick, fruity recipes?

6. Instead of ice cream

Orange-scented apricot yoghurt ice 

If you’re craving something cold and creamy, try low fat plain greek yoghurt with some berries, or make our orange-scented apricot yoghurt ice (pictured).

7. Instead of boiled sweets

Bowl of fruits

Dried fruit such as raisins, dried apricots or dried figs will provide more nutrients than boiled sweets. Dried fruit will still be high in sugar though. You could try one of our fruity desserts for something more refreshing.

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