I love amusement parks! I grew up 20 minutes from Disneyland in California and have loved them ever since. In more recent years, I have become quite the adrenaline junkie and have gotten hooked on the biggest, fastest roller coasters. I don’t make it to Busch Gardens here in Tampa as often as I would like (actually, hardly ever) but with summer coming to an end soon, I might just have to organize a Kelapo field trip! However, one big challenge of spending the day in any theme park is serious food temptation. My favorite theme park food is Dole Whip at Disney in Adventureland. Jen loves the terrible-for-you but ever popular funnel cake. Erin can’t resist the smell of a waffle cone (she likes it better than the ice cream!) Check out our suggestions to avoid a total diet disaster (and to ensure your kids eat something good for them too!)
If you are going to a theme park that allows it (Disney does now, as well as many others), the best thing you can do is pack some healthy snacks in a backpack (coolers are usually prohibited). Always check the rules online before you go, but some will let you go to your car to tailgate even if you can’t bring it in. Or, sneak it in a rolled up sweatshirt or beach towel. Our top suggestions for healthy snacks:
-Stretch Island all-natural fruit strips. They are a half serving of fruit each with no added sugar. Plus, they can slip right into your pocket if you don’t want to carry a cooler. I recommend Cherry or Strawberry.
-Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels. We keep these guys in business, we go through so many! A great salty snack with a little fiber and protein too.
-Greek Yogurt. With twice the protein and half the sugar of regular yogurt, but still filling and in lots of flavors
-Fruits and Veggies (duh) cut into bite size pieces. I like to put an ice cube in with my carrots or grapes, to keep them extra cold
-Chicken Caesar Wrap. This is so easy and kids (and grownups) love them. Whole wheat tortilla, chopped chicken, Caesar dressing, parmesan, and lots of romaine lettuce. Roll it up tight and slice into snack portions
-Plenty of partially frozen bottled waters and low sugar juice, so you can avoid soda!
If this sounds like no fun at all and you must eat some theme park food, here are your best options:
-Corn Dogs. These are actually not that bad in terms of fat and calories (about 380), but make sure you drink a lot of water to make up for all that sodium.
-Chicken Kabobs. A regular chicken kabob (before sauce) is only about 150 calories, plus you get a lot of protein
-Candy Apples. At least you get a healthy apple with about 4 grams of fiber to fill you up
What is YOUR favorite theme park food?