Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Is It Possible to Have a Healthy Halloween?

Six tips for a healthier Halloween!

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Healthy HalloweenHalloween is approaching fast, and, if your kids are like mine, they love candy and would eat it as their meal if they could! Here are six tips for a healthier Halloween to prevent your children from filling up on non-nutritious foods all day!

1. Eat dinner before going trick or treating!

Make sure to feed your children and yourself before trick or treating even if it’s early. I guarantee your kids (and you!) will be able to manage less candy on a fuller stomach.

2. Hand out less candy!

Growing up I always hated going to the house with the bad candy or the dentist who handed out toothbrushes, but they may have been on to something. This year think about handing out less candy and more stickers, mini pumpkins, mini toys and dollar gifts such as fake tattoos, stick on gems, crayons, pencils, erasers, or sticky notes. Try passing out more nutritious foods such as individually wrapped Fig Newtons, dried fruits, or popcorn. I’m handing out individual bags of popchips!

3. Budget the candy!

The amount of candy kids collect in one night goes far beyond the USDA’s advice of “empty calories ”--those with added fat and sugar!  It is so easy to overspend these discretionary calories especially at Halloween time. Limit the amount of candy they are allowed to have when they come home after trick or treating. Make sure you don’t let your children keep their Halloween bags in their room so that they have access to it at all times.

4. Eat candy after dinner—not in between meals!

Have candy only after dinner—not as a snack or when you are hungry. If you start to eat candy on an empty stomach you will fill up and then you won’t want to eat the nutritious stuff. Keep fresh fruits on the table, or some of the cute recipes we showed you today around! (See below!)

5. Have a house candy rule!

As a parent, you are responsible not only for what and where your kids eat but when. You can definitely have them pick any two pieces of candy after dinner each night. After some time, the “best candy “is gone and you can toss the rest because they really don’t care about it anyway.

6. Make fun Halloween treats that include lots of fruits and veggies!

What can you do to fight off those ghastly urges? Give yourself permission to eat something healthy that's still in the spirit of the day. Check out these adorable snack ideas from Family Fun magazine!

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Tags: Healthy Eating , Nutrition , Quick and Healthy , Recipes

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About the Author


MS, RD, CSSD, LD/N

Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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