Healthy Halloween Tricks

Treating Kids to Healthy Fun!

Imagine sitting down to eat a five-pound bag of sugar! That’s what your kids will do on Halloween if you let them. While all foods can be part of a healthy diet—even candy, the recommendation is to eat it sparingly. 

Here are 10 Tricks for Healthy Halloween Fun:
  1. Think outside the candy box! Don’t buy Halloween candy to give to trick-or-treaters any earlier than you have to. Having the candy in the house is too tempting. Buy candy that you don’t like, so you will be less tempted to nibble on it.
  2. Give your child a nutritious meal before he goes trick-or-treating. This will fill him up and make it less likely that he’ll be eating the candy before he gets home.
  3. Limit the number of houses your child visits for trick-or-treating to cut down on the amount of goodies they get.
  4. Let your child indulge a bit. Not allowing your child to eat her Halloween candy will just drive her to want it more. Although a healthy diet is important for children, allowing the occasional treat, especially on a fun-oriented holiday like Halloween, is okay.
  5. Focus on portion control. Set limits on how much candy can be eaten at once. When your child gets home let him choose 5 or 6 pieces he wants to eat, take the rest of the candy and allow your child to pick approximately 2-3 pieces each day as a treat or in their lunch. Keep it out of sight…chances are it will stay out of mind.
  6. Negotiate a deadline with your kids for how long the candy will remain in the house. Once the deadline arrives, out goes the extra candy. (One week is plenty long enough.)
  7. Offer to swap candy and treats for some other prize or reward. For example, offer them a trip to an amusement park, movie or fun event they want to go to.
  8. Have your child brush and floss his teeth thoroughly before going to bed. Although this should be done every night, it’s especially important that your child’s teeth be free of the Halloween sugar.
  9. Donate your leftover candy to charity or a local homeless shelter. Not only will this prevent your child from continuing to eat candy for months to come, it will help teach her the value of helping others.
  10. Find alternatives to trick-or-treating. Many communities have haunted houses, or community centers that offer activities for children other than trick-or treating. Find out what’s going on in your community. 

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