Why You Shouldn't Eat While Swimming In Maryland

Food and the beach go together like peanut butter and jelly or peas and carrots. Of course, you need to bring something to nosh on, or at least must make a pitstop at one of the eateries on the boardwalk if you are planning a day of sand, water, and sun.

Per the Washington Post, it's a rite of passage when we go to the beach to bring a picnic of sorts. The most popular picks are cans of hard seltzer, Capri Suns, snacks like Cheetos or Lay's Potato Chips, even Oreos. Seriously, it takes a lot of energy to splash around in the water, surf, or have swimming contests with your bestie. And, according to UAMS Health, it is okay to eat before heading into the water, as long as you aren't doing any type of strenuous exercising.

However, if you are planning a day at a beach in Maryland — hello, Ocean City! — then you may want to examine Old Line State's laws and plan your eating accordingly because the state has some interesting legalese on the books as it relates to swimming and the beach.

Maryland says no to swimming and eating in the ocean

According to Drew Cochran Law, whether you live in Maryland or are just visiting and planning a day at one of the state's beaches, you cannot simultaneously swim and eat in the ocean if you want to be in compliance with the state law. If you are wondering what incident inspired someone to even write this statute in the books, we're with you. Where and how this law originated remains a mystery — and though most of us know there is no way to possibly do the breast stroke and nibble on our favorite deli sandwich at the same time, per Law Insider, the legal definition of the word swimming includes "wading and the use of inner tubes or beach type swimming aids." So even if you're being lazy in the water and want a snack to accompany you, it falls into this definition.

To be fair, most people probably wouldn't bring their food into the ocean in the first place. Munching on soggy chips while battling waves really doesn't sound that appetizing. However, if you think this law might get you in trouble — if it's even being enforced — our recommendation is to try a beach in Virginia or Delaware, like Rehoboth or Virginia Beach. They don't appear to have these types of food restrictions for beach goers.