Going to the movies can ruin your diet. So, here are a few smart ways to snack at the theatre:

  • Popcorn. When it comes to popcorn, don’t get the large bucket with butter flavoring. It’s over 1,000 calories, and has 4 days’ worth of saturated fat! And every tablespoon of butter flavoring adds another 130 calories. But before you order the small popcorn, thinking you’re virtuous – know this: Not all small popcorns are created equal. At Regal Cinemas, the nations’ largest chain, even a small has over 600 calories! Your best popcorn bet is at Cinemark – the third largest national theater chain. They pop their corn in non-hydrogenated oil, and they sell a junior bag that’s only 200 calories.

  • Avoid the nachos, if you’re craving something savory. Fried chips smothered in cheese are a perfect storm of excess calories, fat, salt and cholesterol. To cut the numbers in half, go for a soft pretzel, with mustard instead of cheese. And reduce the salt even more by brushing most of the crystals off into a trashcan before you sit down.

  • What’s the best chocolate? Sno-Caps. They’re half the fat and calories of M&Ms. But if you’re going to eat a sugary treat, exercise first. Experts say that for 12 hours after a strenuous workout, your body will use more sugar for energy.

  • What about sour candy? Skip the Lemonheads. A box is about 600 calories, with 132 grams of sugar! In real-world terms, that’s nearly 4 days’ worth. Instead, get the Sour Patch Kids. It’s one of the lowest-calorie candies you can choose. And because they have a strong flavor, you may end up eating fewer of them.