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Taking Control of Halloween Candy and Halloween Treats

Sneaky ways to make Halloween fun healthier for kids


Let’s face it: Halloween is a time for treats, and that often means Halloween candy and other not-so-nutritious snacks. But Halloween fun doesn’t have to be unhealthy. There are ways parents can make Halloween treats healthier -- without cutting out the sweets altogether.

1. Fill them up with healthy meals and snacks.

If you’re planning to go trick-or-treating or celebrate at a Halloween party, fill your kids up with a good breakfast and lunch and snacks. That way, they’re less likely to gorge themselves on Halloween candy and other Halloween treats.

2. Give Halloween candy some competition.

Have some Halloween treats on hand at home so that kids can nibble on some nutritious alternatives to Halloween candy in the days following Halloween. Yummy pumpkin muffins or squash soup can be great snacks that kids can have before they move on to Halloween candy.

3. Take the emphasis off sweet treats.

While Halloween treats may take center stage in kids’ minds, you can steer them toward other Halloween fun like making spooky decorations or assembling toys for goody bags. Whether you’re throwing a Halloween party or just decorating your house to make things more festive, you can show your child that Halloween fun doesn’t have to mean Halloween candy.

4. Help your kids ration the Halloween candy.

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A great way to keep your kids from gorging on Halloween treats at once is to sit down with their loot and help them decide how much they can have each day. If they have, say, 50 pieces of Halloween candy, then you can suggest that they eat one (or ½ a package, depending on serving size) as a snack. Odds are, they will soon lose interest and forget about the daily allowance of Halloween candy after a couple of weeks.

5. Let them eat some sweets.

Banning sweets altogether from a child’s life may seem like a good idea, but the fact is, you may run the risk of making things like Halloween candy all the more alluring by doing so. Allowing kids to indulge once in a while, especially on a holiday such as Halloween, can help kids view treats as a small part of other food choices rather than a coveted thing they can never have -- and therefore want even more.

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