Theme parks conjur up images of deep friend funnel cakes, ice cream and greasy cheeseburgers. But now, there might be a burgenoing new reputation with the appearance of healthy menu items at major theme parks around the country.
At Walt Disney Parks apples and low-fat milk are options in the kid's meal instead of fries and soda. According to ABC News parents chose the healthier combo six out of ten times of more than the 12 million kids meals sold last year at Disney Parks. Disney has now started to reduce sodium in kids' meals and offer healthier breakfast options for kids.
The initiative is geared towards kids and families to inspire and encourage healthier lives.
Executive Chef Bill Orton who oversees the children's menus at the Disneyland parks and hotels said to ABC News, "The big trend is what's in season, and what's in season always tastes better. Kids are eating more fruit, vegetables-even broccoli-and whole wheat pasta. "As they get older, they want to eat what their parents are eating."
At popular theme park LEGOLAND in Florida healthy food options include fresh salmon and rotisserie chicken. A new exhibit teaches kids about farming and where food comes from and includes items like wraps, fruit and salads.
At Sea World, their restaurant Sharks Underwater Grill boasts healthy menu items for kids like steak kabobs and Universal Orlando's Three Broomsticks restaurant in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter kids can choose between grapes and apple sauce for their meals.
To date, 1 in 3 children are considered to be overweight or obese in America. With maddening childhood obesity statistics and having more than tripled in the past 30 years, theme parks are making way for healthier options.