A Japadog hot dog, using Kobe beef sausage and named after Japan's figure skater Mao Asada, is held by a customer before the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics February 11, 2010. Credit: Reuters/Chris Helgren

The message came on Monday from Sony Pictures Entertainment chairman and CEO Michael Lynton, who addressed theater owners on the first day of their ShoWest convention in Las Vegas.

I suggest you consider adding a few healthier items to your existing menu, Lynton said in prepared remarks.

I believe it's the right thing to do for your industry, for our audiences ... and for America, he said.

A representative from the National Association of Theater Owners, which represents the men and women who own movie theaters, could not be reached for immediate comment.

ShoWest is the largest gathering of movie theater owners in the United States and vendors come from around the country to sell items ranging from snacks to seats to projection systems.

The studios show up to give early glimpses of their upcoming movies, but Lynton clearly had snacks on his mind.

He cited a study from U.S. group the Alliance for a Healthier Generation that said nearly one in three young Americans is obese or at risk to become overweight.

Lynton said theater owners should keep mainstays such as buttered popcorn, candy and soda, but he suggested they also make room for items like: fruit, veggies with dip, yogurt, granola bars, baked chips and unbuttered, air-popped popcorn.

He also played theater owners a video address about health from television talk-show star Dr. Mehmet Oz.

( Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)