Candy Caution: Tips for a Healthy Halloween

It’s the scariest time of the year again –– time when the witch, goblin and ghost costumes come out. What may actually be more frightening is the amount of sugar kids and adults eat. Candy may seem inevitable this season, but you and your family can be well prepared with these nutritious tips:

  • Fuel Up First: Prepare and enjoy a nutritious meal or snack before heading out to trick-or-treat. Some ideas include: peanut butter on whole grain toast, veggies with hummus, or a low-fat cheese stick with fruit. (Check out #BaptistHealthy recipe ideas)
  • For the Trick-or-Treaters: Consider giving away small party favors instead of candy, such as: bouncy balls, stickers, bubbles, and colorful accessories like bracelets, pencils, plastic fangs, or glow-in-the-dark toys.
  • Focus on Fun- Shift the focus from candy to fun activities. For example: creating costumes, getting together with friends, choosing the trick-or-treating route, and pumpkin carving.
  • Find your Favorites: After trick-or-treating, sort candy into two piles: “favorites” to keep and “least favorites” to give away, toss out, or repurpose. Avoid using candy as a reward for good behavior.
  • Fall into Good Habits: Halloween is the kick-off to the holiday season. One night of trick-or-treating does not have to get you and your family off your healthier habits and routines until the New Year. Think about more nutritious food choices that can be made when it comes to planning, preparing, and purchasing meals and snacks.
  • Fresh Ideas: Avoid the temptation of putting leftover candy in a bowl. Instead, keep a variety of colorful, fresh fruits and vegetables in bowls on your counter.

Lucette Talamas is a registered dietitian with Community Health at Baptist Health South Florida. 

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