Disney Shuts down obesity exhibit after critics complain. Suggestions for healthy theme park food?

An interesting article. What would be your suggestions for corporate theme parks to encourage healthy eating?

  • Posted by: Sam1148
  • March 1, 2012


lloreen March 2, 2012
Going to Disneyland is a huge, once in a year or lifetime treat for kids and I don't really think it is the place or the time to lecture them about healthy eating. That is like saying that Thanksgiving is the best day to start your new low-carb, low-fat diet. That being said, I have been subjected to enough family trips to the Disney empire that I would be really happy if they could manage a decent meal that tastes okay. Maybe they could open up food trucks or stands to aspiring young local chefs instead of doing assembly-line, corporate style meals. I would line up for a good Korean taco at a foodtruck on mainstreet Disneyland! Or a plate of steamed chicken tamales with homemade like the ladies at the LA farmer's markets make them. Hmm...the more I think about it, the more I think this would be a good marketing opportunity for Disney to jump on the local, foodie bandwagon. "take your kids to Disneyland and sample the best of LA foodtrucks!"
Anitalectric March 1, 2012
I'm not familiar with that particular exhibit, but one good sign is that Babycakes opened a location in Disneyworld in 2010 and it is doing really well. http://www.babycakesnyc.com/2010/11/its-truebabycakes-nyc-now-in-downtown-disney.html

For most theme park goers who are after a fun time, the draw of their gorgeous, decadent donuts is probably enough--the fact that they are baked, vegan and allergy-friendly is just a bonus. People are becoming more aware about food and as a result the demand for better quality ingredients is on the rise.

Homer would definitely approve.
Sam1148 March 2, 2012
I agree and disagree with you there. There's a segment of the population that demands healthy food. (whatever that is really). And a segment which is much ahem..'larger' that demands bigger portions for the outrageous prices they pay. To get back on track the Disney (blue cross/blue shield sponsored thing) exhibit demonized children that were overweight for making bad choices in their life.

I'm getting off track here too..I think the parks, and resturants and other places should offer smaller portions and not promote their foods as 'good for you' but rather, Hey! it's Good to EAT. With little to no health claims on the menu or packaging. Eating shouldn't be 'medicine' or a chore, but a pleasure. Not a game show chow down or something to eat just to get through the day.

Voted the Best Reply!

pierino March 1, 2012
Spare me from the tyranny of vegans and raw foodists. Give me Homer Simpson's soul donut! But when you are no longer hungry stop eating.
Sam1148 March 2, 2012
I agree with you so much there. I love raw food veggies, and even vegan and gluten free stuff. If it's tasty.

But in my childhood, it was 'meals'..and food wasn't medicine. We'd have raw tomatoes (with dressing) and green spring onions, soaked in vinegar..to eat raw with salt dip...along with fried chicken etc for Sunday dinner. And lots of greens with bacon fat.
And fresh peaches from the orchard with ice cream. Raw food is good, so don't over react to that.
Portions are crazy now in resturants. Either they're very large, or little works of arts for a bulimic super-model with a cocaine habit.

I think it's the lack of balance in foods today...and people that key in on a special 'evil of the day' substance.

Sam1148 March 1, 2012
Thought it an interesting reaction from the customers (guests) to the exhibit. It seems the children that were overweight were depicted as the villains there.
The true villains would be the parents IMHO. I like Disney and have been many times...but the buffets are stupid expensive.
And putting down 30 bucks for a breakfast buffet you really want to get your money worth.
Maybe an option for breakfast places where you could simply purchase a 8 inch small plate. Instead of filling multiple 'free' plates.
Like a roller bar sushi or Tapis place.

Of course we food enthusiasts aren't that much better when it comes to un-healthy eating. The Craze of smoked meats, pork bellies, Julia Child's recipes, which frankly are very equal to Paula Dean's stuff for fat/butter/creme and deserts filled with sugar.

And the wild swinging pendulum of raw food craze and veganism.

For me it's been to the point I rarely go out to eat anymore, because the portions are so huge, not so much for weight control..but I just can't stomach large portions.
foidivin March 1, 2012
Fruit is always great for kids. Healthy can be pretty simple too. More water and less juice or soda. Sandwiches with whole grains. Natural snacks vs processed.
Sam1148 March 1, 2012
While I don't have great knowledge of the issue in the article. The last time I went to EPCOT the "LAND" featured a good resturant for lunch time snacks. This was a decade or so ago. Now, it seems it's closed for lunch and that menu is 'all you can eat' and features lots of breads and meats. In the past for lunch they used to serve a great little plate of raw veggies and dips..and cheese and fruit plates.
Recommended by Food52