Halloween is just around the corner! We cant wait to put on our costumes and get ready for a fun night of trick-or-treating? I know I am! I’m mostly in it for the treats I get to eat; it’s the perfect time and month to indulge in sweets. However, it isn’t always the healthiest, especially for children. So, what are some measures we can take to keep our kids healthy for Halloween?
Even though many of us buy candy early to prep for trick-or-treaters, it can temp us to indulge our sweet tooth. It’s always more tempting to have sweet treats when they’re in the house than having to go to the store for them. Another way of avoiding temptation is buying less of what we need and candy we don’t like! Most of us wont eat treats we dont enjoy. The chances are low and not only are you keeping yourself from overeating sweets, but you avoid the possibilities of having your child eat less as well.
Eating Before Trick-or-Treating:
Before leaving to collect your treats don’t forget to eat dinner! Eating a healthy dinner in advance is important. It helps keep a lid on the snacking as your child walks from house to house and maintain blood sugar levels before bedtime. Even if you allow your child a few pieces of candy before bed, there will be less of a chance of a sugar crash.
Practicing portion control is crucial to limiting the intake of candy your child has. One way we can restrict the candy our children get is ditching the pillowcase “bag” we usually use to collect our treats. Instead, buy a Halloween treat bucket, the one with the shape of a pumpkin, or a small bag. Once home sort through the candies, for your child’s safety. You want to make sure the candy isn’t tampered with or out-of-date. One way to sort through it is by starting with the candy your child doesn’t like and won’t eat. Choose how many treats your child can have each day.
Span It Out:
Sometimes we come home with more candy than expected. If that’s the case not to worry, you can span out the way you distribute the candy. Give your child one or two treats with a healthy snack or meal until the excitement of having candy in the house wears out. Choose candies that are fun size to avoid overindulging in candy and that have less fat and calories.
Choose Candy Carefully:
According to American Dental Association, hard candy or other sweets that stay in the mouth for a long period plays a role in tooth decay. We recommend choosing candy your child will spend less time eating to avoid tooth decay; this means avoiding the sticky candy! The ones that are clinging to your teeth the minute you chew on it such as taffy and gummy bears. Sticky sweets take longer for our saliva to wash out, which increases the chances of getting tooth decay. Watch out for the clinger candies.
Choose Non-Sugary Foods and Toys:
We can choose to give out healthier options than candy and still satisfy the sweet tooth. You can choose to give the fun, healthy treats such as small pretzel bags, mini rice cereal boxes, cheddar cheese crackers, or animal crackers. It’s what gets put into the treat bag that makes it exciting. Toys are another option to give out to trick-or-treaters. A child is more likely to choose and prefer a toy over the candy. It can be a bouncing ball or spider ring, something that is fun and safe for all ages of trick-or-treaters.
Halloween can still be fun for the family even if we take measures to keep our kids healthy. The safety and health of your child are essential, especially when it comes to preserving their teeth and maintaining healthy habits. Be safe and have a Happy Halloween!