Fair food is notoriously fried, sweet and interestingly weird. Only at the fair could a vendor offer fried Coca Cola or Pepsi Cola and make a killing. It seems like every year they come out with something even stranger than the year before; the Iowa State Fair even sells fried butter now! As a dietitian, I cannot say that I am tempted to try that one, but you might get me interested in a funnel cake or part of a fried Snickers.
• Eat before you go to the fair. There is nothing worse than being starving and surrounded my amazing-smelling food that you hesitate to eat. If you have eaten before you go to the fair, there will be less
pressure to simply fill your stomach.
• Choose with your heart. Since there is no pressure to curb the hunger, you can be very picky about your choice of foods. Try to choose novelty foods you don’t get every day. This will increase your enjoyment of the
foods you do choose to eat. Pick something special that will remind you of your fair experience.
• Be Informed. When you choose what you want to eat, be aware of the kind of calories we are talking about. (See the chart of common fair foods below.) The calories in fried, high-sugar, high-fat and highly processed
foods can add up very quickly. You could easily consume a good chunk of whole days’ calories in one item if you are not making a conscious choice.
• Share when at all possible. Often times fair foods are very rich. It can actually be more satisfying to share the serving between two or more people so everyone can get a good taste without overdoing it.
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