Healthy Tips for the Halloween Aftermath

By: Kristen Wint

I have fond memories of stashing my Halloween goodies in my closet, out of sight of my brother’s prying eyes. He would scarf his haul in a matter of days and then watch, green with envy, as weeks later, I slowly unpeeled the wrappers off my favorite molasses kisses and miniature candy bars before popping them into my mouth. I was a natural at savoring delicious foods and knew just how to stretch them out to make them last – it wasn’t odd to find Easter candy in my possession at the beginning of June. But, alas, this is not the case with all children, and if you have a goody addict on your hands, you must be more diligent in monitoring the candy consumption!

Here are a few helpful tips for managing the post Halloween feeding frenzy:

  • Talk to your kids before trick-or-treating so they understand why you are limiting their candy consumption. My kids know a bit about food additives, dyes and GMOs, so I point out the most brightly colored candies to them, letting them see for themselves that they contain tons of artificial coloring.
  • Remind children that if they don’t eat all their candy right away, they’ll have more for later. Suggest they share some with family and friends. It will decrease their supply, while enforcing sharing at the same time.
  • Set a good example by eating Halloween candy in moderation yourself (I struggle with this one!). To help keep cravings in check, buy your candy at the last minute, and don’t hang on to any leftovers.
  • Someone recommended storing candy in the fridge or freezer, making it harder to chew and more tiresome to get through, which in turn means kids eat less. I’m not sure if this will work with all sweet gobblers, but it’s worth a try.
  • Tell your children they must eat at least one healthy snack item for every two pieces of candy they want to devour. This works well at after-school snack time.
  • Consider buying back some candy from your children if you are very concerned about overindulging. I haven’t tried this one, but it could be a good option if a child is overweight or has poor eating habits. Exchanging goodies for money shows that you respect the fact that they earned the candy and gives them an alternate treat of some extra pocket cash for spending how they wish.

All practical tips aside, remember to enjoy All Hallows’ Eve with your kids for what it is. Keep the tradition alive by reminding them why they say “Trick or treat!” at neighbor’s doors, and get them to do the odd trick from time to time. It will keep their candy sacks lighter and make them appreciate their Halloween returns even more!

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