Keeping healthy at the York Fair


It's a foodie lovers dream.

Shark on a stick, a mash potato sundae, pumpkin flavored funnel cakes and moon pies.

While York Fair's food selection can be tasty, it can also be bad for the waistline.

Cindy Ketterman, a registered dietician with WellSpan knows that notion well.

A long time York County resident, Ketterman has been coming to the fair for years.

Her guilty choice is a steak sandwich.

"Every year I say 'I had the steak last year. This year I'm getting waffles and ice cream,'" she said. "I always get the steak."" she said.

Walking through the fair, Ketterman scouted the different types of food available for visitors.

While she wants residents to enjoy themselves, she offered some healthy tips to ensure you don't go overboard.

Plan Ahead

Take a minute to think about what you are going to eat at the fair before going up to a food stand, Ketterman suggests. If there are a few things you "have to try" at the fair, take into consideration what you eat the day before and day after you attend the fair.

"Try to compensate," she said.

Think grilled not deep fried.

"I know this will fall on deaf ears, but stay away from fried foods,"Ketterman said.

As a registered dietician, Ketterman said that for the past few years its seems as though food vendors have gone crazy with food.

"It's like it's a competition to see what is the next thing you can deep fry," she said.

Instead Ketterman suggest looking for grilled options. The York Fair offers crabcakes, roast beef and ham sandwiches and corn on the cob. Fruit is also available.

Limit your drinks.

While looking around the food vendors, Ketterman noted that the healthiest thing to drink at the fair might just be water.

"Everything seemed to be filled with sugar," she said.

Sit don't walk while you eat.

Ketterman suggests to come with friends, buy a few things and sit down.

"You see everything on sticks," she said. "That encourages you to eat, walk and move onto the next thing to eat."

By sitting at a picnic table and sharing food with friends, you get a chance to sample everything without eating too much. This can work well if you have a deep-fried oreo. Remember the large turkey leg might be a healthier option, but can feed more than one person.

Walking around only burns so much

While walking around the fairgrounds, you might think you are burning a ton of weight. Remember this: One hour of walking steadily at the fair burns about 264 calories.

In an effort to make the fair healthier, Ketterman would like organizers to incorporate more information about healthier options on its web site. She would also love to see more information about foods that might be gluten-free and contain potential allergic reactions.

"Other fairs are already doing it," she said.