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Sharp Health News

6 tips for eating well at the fair

May 28, 2019

6 tips for eating well at the fair

Some view the annual San Diego County Fair’s arrival as a blessing, others, a curse — especially when it comes to trying to stay true to your healthy eating routine. But with some good practices in place, you can eat your way through the fair and have a great time without feeling guilty. You can enjoy the fair by leaning toward healthier choices like grilled items and fresh fruit smoothies as opposed to deep-fried foods.

Here are 6 suggestions for you and your family if you plan to visit the fair this summer.

  1. Arrive with a full belly
    Eat a healthy meal shortly before going to the fair. This will enable you to still enjoy your favorite treats, but in smaller amounts.

  2. Optimize to-go boxes
    Purchase items that you can take home and eat later, to spread out the caloric impact. One example is dark chocolate-covered bacon. Although it contains bacon, at least the dark chocolate offers some health benefits. You can divide the treat to last for several days.

  3. Be mindful of sauces
    When it comes to dipping sauces, try to avoid processed items as much as possible. Sauces that appear to be more natural are your best bet, such as barbecue sauce.

  4. Go for natural lemonade
    When it comes to quenching your thirst, lemonade is one of the unique treats that make the fair special. Although most lemonade recipes contain sugar, the fresh-squeezed ones typically don’t have corn syrup and other chemicals, making this a far better choice than soda.

  5. Shop healthy gadgets
    If walking the exhibit halls looking at the latest gadgets is more your speed, look for items that will help you live a healthier lifestyle, like blenders. Especially with new peer-reviewed data on probiotics, why not make your own yogurt-based smoothies at home. Another cool (no pun intended) gadget is the ice cube sheet that remains frozen for two days. These are great for food safety, especially at outdoor sporting events or while camping.

  6. BYO healthy options
    Many people don’t realize that you can bring your own food from home. There are rules, however, such as no alcohol, no glass containers and no knives. Drinks must be in factory-sealed containers or you can bring in an empty beverage container to fill inside.

Enjoy, and don’t forget the sunscreen, hat and comfortable shoes.

This story was updated in May 2019.

For the media: To talk to a chef about fair food, contact Erica Carlson, senior public relations specialist, at

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