By Betty Murray
Halloween is a holiday packed full of thrills and chills for kids and adults alike. It is also packed full of sugar and sweets. Halloween just wouldn’t be the same without trick-or-treating, but before your kids fill up their buckets of candy, take some time to prepare for a “healthier” Halloween.
Try these tips for a Healthy Halloween:
- Start the evening off right by feeding your family a healthy dinner before the Trick or Treating fun begins. Make it fun by dining in costume and decorating the table with spiders and cobwebs. Filling up your kids’ stomachs with healthy food, like fruits, vegetables and protein will keep their sugar cravings to a minimum.
- Attend a church, school or community Halloween party as a fun alternative to door-to-door Trick or Treating, and can help cut down on the amount of candy your kids take home. If you’re princesses and goblins are going the traditional route, knocking on neighbor’s doors, try limit them to one or two blocks, and end the night at your home with a haunted house, Halloween-themed games, and healthy treats.
- When those candy buckets and bags come home, take control of the goods before the candy makes it to your kids’ rooms. Store the candy in an off limits container that only you have access to. This will allow you to monitor their sugar intake, and the candy supply could last your family several months, rather than just a few hours.
- Substitute candy for healthy snacks like granola bars or applesauce packs. Gun toys and gadgets can also be used as a sugar substitute. Who says a “treat” has to be candy? Shop your local Dollar Tree, or the dollar aisle at Target for some fun-sized toys for your stock. Party favor toys that come in multi-packs work well, too. Your house may not be a favorite among the kids, but chances are, you’ll have an easier time making friends with other neighborhood parents.
Don’t substitute your children’s health for fun this Halloween. With a little planning, a Healthy Halloween celebration can be just as fun for the kids as an evening filling up on candy.
Betty Murray, CN, HHC, RYT is a Certified Nutritionist & Holistic Health Counselor, founder of the Dallas-based integrative medical center, Wellness and founder of the Metabolic Blueprint wellness program. Betty’s nutrition counseling practice specializes in metabolic and digestive disorders and weight loss resistance. A master of the biochemistry of the body, Betty teaches her clients how to utilize nutritional interventions to improve their health. Betty is a member of the Institute of Functional Medicine and the National Association of Nutrition Professionals.