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Amusement Park Concessions: Taking You for a Caloric Ride

By HERWriter
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Obesity related image Photo: Getty Images

Summer is here, the kids are out of school and day trips filled with fun in the sun are on the horizon. Some of the main attractions during the summer months are water and amusement parks. With all the scary rides and thrills, your kids will be begging for a day of adventure.

According to David Zinczenko and Matt Goulding, both contributors to Men’s Health Magazine, the scariest line you will be in is the concession line. The two authors of the book series, Eat This, Not That!, said, “If you want to see something truly frightening at your local amusement park, swing by the concession stand. On the menu: artery-clogging fatty foods and belt-busting confections.” They also added that you do not have to be “captive” when it comes to food choices.

Zinczenko and Goulding said one of the worst choices is cotton candy. The fluffy, sugary concoction weighs in at 220 calories and 56 grams of sugar for a mere 2.1 ounces. Zinczenko said to instead cool yourself off with a popsicle, containing only 45 calories and eight grams of sugar.

Here's a quiz: What is the healthier choice, a snow cone or a half cup of strawberry ice cream? The winner is actually the strawberry ice cream. Zinczenko found that just three ounces of the syrup dumped on top of the snow cone's icy mound makes it add up to 270 calories, with 68 grams of sugar. If you opt for a half cup of ice cream, you only tally up to 125 calories and 19 grams of sugar.

When most of us think of a cool summer drink, we think of lemonade. This deceptively refreshing drink twists its way up to 300 calories, laden with 74 grams of sugar.

Zinczenko said, “Noticing a trend here? Lemonade, like cotton candy and snow cones, earns all of its calories from sugar. No wonder the summertime beverage earns its own category in this must-see list of The Worst Drinks in America.” He suggests switching to unsweetened iced tea and adding a bit of sugar yourself (personally, I prefer to add natural honey instead).

My advice: If you feel the need to splurge, pick one treat. The American Dietetic Association said, “Can't resist a hot dog or two?

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.



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