Happy, Healthy Halloween

Candy, sweets, and treats are the name of the game for Halloween (not to mention carnivals with lots of fried foods and sweets if you’re around Independence, Kansas for Neewollah). Having a healthy Halloween without ruining all the fun might seem like an impossible task but you can still enjoy this holiday and even have a few sweets along the way.

Eating sweets and other less-than-healthy foods on special occasions aren’t too big of a deal if your family has a routine of healthy eating habits on the “regular occasions”. If your regular diet includes loads of candy and fried foods, a better start may be improving the family’s daily habits before worrying about Halloween.

Even with healthy habits outside of Halloween, you may want to employ a few rules and tricks to help keep you and your family healthier.

Setting Limits

For starters, talk with your kids about moderation. Children are smarter than we give them credit for and are capable of understanding concepts like self-control. This can be helpful when setting limits on the amount of candy they can have each day. Without it, you may come off as being too strict and lead them to sneak extra treats. Set the schedule and amount, that way they won’t be surprised when you tell them “no more.”

Eat before going out

A healthy snack or meal can provide kids with energy they need trick-or-treating and keep them satiated to discourage snacking on candy along the way. Fiber and protein are the way to go because it will also help keep a stable blood sugar, further deterring candy craze.

bananas and tangerines

You can keep it festive with a hard-boiled egg “ghost,” clementine “pumpkins” with a celery stem, or many others.

Trick-or-treat

When you do head out, take a smaller bag or container. A full bag keeps with the tradition of Halloween without going overboard. Be on the look out for alternative treats. Bubbles, stickers, glow sticks, and more can be fun treats that last even longer than a single chocolate.

Stash it

Store the candy out of sight and out of mind. This discourages mindless snacking. Hand out a few each day, perhaps with lunch or dinner, but let your children pick their favorites.

After a few weeks, the Halloween buzz has usually worn off. This is a good time to get rid of excess candy. Whether that’s donating it or trading it in at some dentists’ offices, excess candy can be too much of a temptation. Don’t worry, Thanksgiving sweets are just a few weeks away.