Ways to Stay Healthy During Mardi Gras

Ways to Stay Healthy During Mardi Gras

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Mardi Gras: Mardi, French for “Tuesday”, and Gras French for “fat”, literally translates to “Fat Tuesday”. This is a celebration that marks the end of the Lenten season of eating rich, fatty foods. 

Mardi Gras, in New Orleans, Louisiana, is the most celebrated festival and is also an art form. We are all familiar with how to celebrate and eat King Cake every week, from the marching bands to the floats to the dancers to the throws.

Tossing out our New Year’s Resolutions, it begs the question: How do you have a healthy Mardi Gras Season when the focus is so heavily on rich delicacies and not your resolutions? 

New Orleans Realtor Dean Cacioppo says that healthy foods are nearly impossible to find during Mardi Gras. He offers some tips on how you can stay as healthy as possible while enjoying New Orleans’ biggest celebration.

  1. Make sure to bring your own snacks. You never know when you will feel the need for something on the parade route. You can keep your energy levels up by carrying healthy snacks like trail mix, granola bars, and fruit.
  2. Water is your best friend. You can drink alcoholic and non-alcoholic sweetened beverages. However, drinking water in alternation with it will help you stay hydrated and reduce your intake of high-calorie beverages.
  3. Take the time to enjoy each bite. Be more mindful. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain’s signal to tell you that it is full. We are prone to overindulge. Be mindful of how much we eat, and enjoy every bite of that king cake or daiquiri.
  4. Get Moving. You can walk or cycle the parade route. This will allow you to get your exercise in, as well as avoid having to navigate the streets blocked by traffic. Blue Bikes can be used to explore the city. You can also dance along to the marching bands’ music, and even jump up and down for throws. While you’re burning calories and stabilizing blood sugar, grab all the purses, shoes, coconuts, or beads!
  5. You can forget about the guilt. Mardi Gras can be a joyful time and should not be feared. You should not eat or drink more than you planned. It is important to get back to healthy eating habits as soon as possible.

“Here’s one of my favorite parade snack recipes. Popcorn is whole grain and has only 30 calories per popped cup. For a sweet, satisfying snack, I add it to dried fruit, chocolate, nuts, and other foods” Cacioppo says.

poppin trail mix

Poppin’ Trail Mix


  • 3 cups popcorn
  • 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon chia seed
  • 2 cups lightly salted almonds
  • 1 cup dried craisins or raisins
  • 2 cups dried mango


  1. Half of the chocolate chips can be melted in the microwave
  1. Sprinkle popcorn with chocolate and chia seeds on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Let dry for about 15 to 20 minutes.
  1. Once the mixture is dry, combine all ingredients, including any remaining chocolate chips, in a bowl. Keep in an airtight container.
  1. Enjoy!

Final thoughts

To keep yourself healthy during Mardi Gras, make sure to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and electrolytes. Additionally, maintain a balanced diet and don’t overindulge in food. You can also find delicious healthy snack ideas on social media

Finally, wear comfortable clothing and use adequate protection from the sun. By following these guidelines, you can have a safe and enjoyable Mardi Gras experience.