Beating the Ballpark BingesDig In to a Healthier Plate During Baseball Season
-- By Becky Hand, Licensed & Registered Dietician
Take me out to the ballgame.
Take me out to the crowd.
Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks…
and hot dogs, and beer, and nachos, and ice cream…
'Tis the season for trips to the old ballpark, and chances are you’ll get hungry sometime during those nine innings of play. Before you head out to watch your favorite team, check out these tips to avoid the big ballgame binge:
- Eat a little something before going to the ballpark. This will take the edge off your hunger so you won’t over-do on the high calorie ballpark foods.
- Check out some of the new choices at the ballpark. Many stadiums now offer leaner turkey hot dogs, soy burgers, fruit cups, and low fat frozen yogurt.
- Decide on what you will purchase before you get in line. This will help prevent temptation and buying on impulse.
- Go easy on the beer and other alcoholic drinks, as well as regular soda pop. The extra calories go down in a gulp and add up fast. Alcohol also lowers inhibitions, making you more likely to eat (and drink) more than you normally would.
- Plan on banking a few extra calories earlier in the day to use on those ballpark delights. In other words, eat smaller meals and snacks so that you have the option to enjoy the ballpark foods without exceeding your calorie budget.
- Find out what food items can be taken into the game. If possible bring along your own healthy snacks—some grapes, fresh fruit, strawberries, raw veggies and bottled water—to eat along with your hot dog. You’ll enjoy the flavor of the ballpark food, but these low calorie add-ons will fill you up.
- Enjoy the game! If you do splurge on ballpark food, cut back the next day and move on with your healthy eating plan.
- Exercise before the game. After you’ve worked hard in the gym, you’ll think twice before overindulging, and likely eat less.