My husband and I took the kids to Disneyland a few days ago. As we walked through the park I noticed fruit and nuts stands, but few people were in line to purchase the items. As you can imagine, the lines were lengthy for cotton candy, churros and snow cones. As we were leaving the park I walked up to one of the fruit and nut stands and had a conversation with the employee (Cast Member as they are called) about the specifics of the purchases. This nice man explained to me that his stand sold about two hundred pieces of fruit per day and on average, 15,000 people visited the park daily. I thought I saw about three fruit stands in Disneyland that day so that makes 600 pieces of fruit sold in a day. So roughly 4% of people that visit Disneyland on a daily basis are buying fruit. I know Jamie Oliver, Michelle Obama and Alice Waters would be happy to see healthy options at Disney, but I have to wonder what would happen if the cotton candy, churros and snow cones stands were replaced with fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts? The rides and shows are so damn good at Disneyland, would people really care if the unhealthy food disappeared? Do people visit Disneyland for the food?I am proud of Disneyland and the nutritional efforts they are making. I wish they could help me do something about those half dozen 15-18 month old kids I saw sucking down huge baby bottles full of juice.
About Melanie Silverman
Melanie is a pediatric registered dietitian nutritionist (RD) and a board certified lactation consultant (IBCLC) working primarily in pediatric nutrition for well over 15 years. She spent seven years as a clinical dietitian at The University of Chicago Medical Center in the neonatal intensive care unit, pediatric intensive care unit, adult and pediatric burn units, and high risk pediatric follow-up clinic. She also served as an adjunct faculty member at Loyola University Chicago. Melanie has presented at state and national meetings for the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), March of Dimes, Prader-Willi California Foundation, Texas Prader-Willi Association, Oklahoma Prader Willi Syndrome Association, Foundation for Prader-Willi Research (FPWR) in the United States and Canada and the Prader-Willi Syndrome USA (PWSA). She worked hard for her Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry and Spanish from Indiana University and a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition from Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center. A member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, California Dietetic Association, Pediatric Nutrition Practice Group, Women’s Health Group, Nutrition Entrepreneurs and an active member of the International Lactation Consultant Association.