Ask Jen about eating healthy at the fair

hotdog fries and lollipop


I need someone to tell me how to not gain 30 pounds this year while practically living at the fair?

— Not ready to buy bigger jeans”

Dear Small Jeans, cotton candy, popcorn and lollipops

Stick to the “deep fried” section of vendors.

Just Kidding.

Ha. You know, if there were a magic calorie-smashing wand, I would have bought like a dozen of them by now. Since there isn’t, we’re going to have to rely on something else this fair season: our own willpower. corn dogs

…That’s no fun.

Overindulging can quite possibly tip the scales in the wrong direction by a few pounds, but I find it darn near impossible to literally gain 30 pounds in a week. Exact nutrition facts for any of the popular fair foods is almost impossible to calculate, because so many vendors have their own secret recipes. As previously mentioned in my hilarious opening to this article, let’s look at deep fried _____ (fill in the blank). Since I can find some info online, how about those famous little round chocolate cookies with the white cream in the middle whose name starts and ends with the letter “O” (If you can’t guess what I’m talking about, go ahead and crawl back under the rock in which you live).

So, according to the nutrition facts on that beautiful blue package, the serving size is 3 cookies. 160 calories, 7 total grams of fat, 0 grams of cholesterol 140 milligrams of sodium, 25 grams carbs, 14 grams sugar.

Now dip those suckers in batter and deep fry them.

According to a popular and trendy fitness website, the estimated nutrition facts for 1 (one) single deep fried cookie is: 260 calories, 8 total grams of fat, 460 milligrams of sodium, 30 grams carbs, 5 grams sugar. Keep in mind, we are comparing 3 plain cookies to just 1 deep fried cookie. Oh, and the last time I checked, six of them came in a cute little red and white plaid paper boat. SIX of them.  Lord, have mercy.

Grab 5 friends, buy an order of deep fried cookies, and each of you eat one. You get your cookie-fix without the cookie-weight multiplied by 6. Problem (kind of) solved.

Healthier alternatives

The bottom line is to keep your eye out for healthier alternatives. There are better choices all over the fairs; salad on a stick (yes, that’s a thing), sandwich wraps, grilled chicken sandwiches, fresh fruit and melon, corn on the cob, baked potatoes… the list goes on and on. And remember, also, you might want to think about eating away from the fairgrounds before you arrive, or pack food you make at home — this will also save you some money!

Don’t forget to splurge every once in a while. After all, the fair only comes around once a year!

Go make something awesome,

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