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Snack Series: Healthy Stuff??

Healthy Treats

Healthy Treats

So, Disney’s been doing this crazy thing lately. They’ve been offering…healthy snack food. It’s weird. It’s an oxymoron wrapped in irony. I’m not at all sure how I feel about this.

Fresh Fruit Choices at the Snack Stand

Fresh Fruit Choices

I mean, it’s probably for the best. But, as a result of this change, I now have the option to feel even MORE guilty about eating that popcorn, turkey leg, funnel cake, school bread, mickey bar, fudge, and homemade chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich…because I could have, instead, had a salad, or some fresh apple slices, or some carrot sticks. Carrot sticks!?!

Kids' Picks Options

Kids' Picks Options

They have these things everywhere now. Restaurants, resorts, even at a snack stand right next to the Castle. They follow you everywhere. Even the kids are forced to re-consider their choices: while 5 years ago it would be french fries and Coke or nuthin’…now there’s the option of grapes and milk at Disney? How confusing.

Mixed Fruit at Everything POP

Mixed Fruit at Everything POP

But don’t get me wrong. I fully understand that moderation and healthy choices are key when it comes to a nutritious diet. I partake of healthy proteins, veggies, whole grain breads and cereals. Egg-white omelets, even.

However, does the “everything in moderation” rule really have to follow me to Disney World? The place where I’m a kid again, where I can survive on gallons of Coca-Cola and mountains of Goofy’s Sour Flavored Sugar alone if I so desire? I mean, there are dole whips to be eaten. The Mickey Bar is an icon!

Salads and Everything POP

Salads and Everything POP

Alas, when you can’t beat ‘em, you should probably join ‘em…in moderation, of course. The apple slices DO come with a little container of caramel for dipping. But I’d stay away from the grapes if I were you. I do believe my last batch, from the snack stand next to the Castle no less, had already begun fermentation.

Apples and Veggies at Everything POP

Apples and Veggies at Everything POP

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13 Comments

  1. Jenn says:

    I have to say… FINALLY! I loved the fruit snacks and veggies when we were there in May. There’s only so many fries and sodas, etc that my body can handle. Especially since I’m not used to eating THAT unhealthy when I’m home. I’m all about cheating on vacation and splurging on fabulously greasy food…but I SWEAR that when I walked past the fruit stand by Space Mountain, my poor nutrient depleted body FORCED me to go grab an apple. And it was the best darn apple I’ve eaten in awhile, haha!

  2. admin says:

    That’s hilarious! I’m glad you enjoy the changes :-) I have certainly had experiences where my body didn’t know what to do with a green vegetable after WDW trips, so I can relate!

  3. Winnie says:

    I’d rather Disney put more effort into their kids menus vs. worrying about the snacks. For a place which is supposed to be magical for kids, I find their menu selections to be unimaginative and extremely limited.

  4. admin says:

    Really interesting comment, Winnie–thanks. I’ve never thought about Disney expanding their kids’ menus!

  5. Gray says:

    Ha ha, you’re funny. I’m with Jenn–I’m down with eating deep-fried whatever once in awhile as a treat, but my body does rebel after awhile and crave healthy things. It’s nice to have choices.

  6. Brad says:

    I think Winnie makes a good point. While the fruits and veg may be a step in the right direction, they don’t really make “meal options.” If you want your kid to have some chicken breast and grilled vegetables, you rarely have that option.

  7. admin says:

    Yes, it’s a really good point. DisneyDaddy also mentioned in his Cinderella’s Royal Table review that the kids’ meal options were all the standard counter service fare. This just seems like there are very few choices, and even fewer healthy choices.

    I do think you can find some different options at some of the more ethnic restaurants however: Marrakesh, Yak and Yeti, and the table service restaurants in the Japan and China pavilions may have a bit of variation from the norm.

  8. Heather says:

    I completely agree with Winnie, the children’s menu is in desperate need of expansion. My daughters are young (3 under 6) but they are adventurous eaters, they just need small portions. They order a kids meal and munch on it a little, but primarily they wind up eating from our plates because they want ‘real’ food.

    I like that there are healthier options now, but don’t like that they are becoming less and less optional. When I’m on vacation, my normal diet goes out the window. I want to eat ‘fun’ food! It’s really nice to be able to grab a salad, but I don’t like being forced, which happens a lot on the kids menus.

  9. admin says:

    Again–some great points. I especially like that you mention that your kids are adventurous eaters and end up bored with their kids’ meals! I wonder how many other families are experiencing the same!

  10. Sandra Givens says:

    We are extremely happy that fresh fruit is available in all the parks. My diabetic husband loves that he can have something that fits his dietary requirements, and we all like some cut up fruit or a banana at least once a day.

    I do agree about the kids meals, although our son is way past that stage. Why can’t they offer a half tuna sandwich on white for kids at Columbia Harbor House? How about grilled chicken on a stick with rice or a roll, not just at the Yakatori place? How hard would it be to offer a mini-meal at sit-down places with half-size portions of a simple main course and veggies? Maybe a small chicken potpie? I notice that some places do seem to offer a selection of items for kids, but a kids sampler would be nice at all the TS restaurants, and certainly more variety at the CS. Kids deserve more than burger/pizza/chicken fingers.

  11. AJ says:

    Sandra — Thanks for your awesome comment! I think they’re starting to branch out on the kids meals, but the old standards are still there. Luckily, with the kids picks, fries and soda are no longer standard — grapes, carrot sticks, milk, and water are the main picks!

  12. Joy says:

    We have been unimpressed by the quality of the fruits and veggies available at Disney-in fact,most of them are way past their prime in our experience(I guess everyone is eating fries) and we bring our own since what Disney considers a snack,we consider junk. This does not include a sundae at Ghiradellis’. But the apple slices that come with meals taste mostly of the chemicals they are soaked in,the melon is unripe and the carrots are flavorless. I’d suggest just carrying in your own from a grocery store in a plastic box and skip what Disney considers “Fresh”

  13. AJ says:

    Joy — Great ideas. We’ve found WDW fruits and veggies to be less than fantastic, but Disneyland seems to do a pretty good job at it.

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