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A Few Tricks To Limit the Unhealthy Treats

SS Member Image By drodriguez 10.08.08
A Few Tricks To Limit the Unhealthy Treats
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What kid does not look forward to Halloween every year?  It is the one day a year that eating loads of candy is acceptable and even encouraged.  But not everyone is so happy about a heavy sack of candy becoming a part of their child’s mealtime.  With obesity on the rise and parents becoming increasingly health conscious, many want an alternative to the sugar extravaganza we call Halloween.


Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean you will have to hand out raisins this year.  Lisa Flam from the Associated Press recently wrote an article on the topic of obesity and Halloween treats.  She says experts agree that indulging in a night of candy eating is nothing to worry about, regardless of a child’s weight.  But Halloween is a good time to teach children a lesson about portion control by limiting the amount of candy they consume. 


A recent AP article offers 10 tips to stop the sugar overload this Halloween.  One idea is to sit down with children before trick-or-treating to agree on how much candy they will eat that night.  Including them as part of the process will make them feel responsible for their eating habits as well as teaching them a lesson in portion control.


Another tip is to simply feed them dinner before leaving the house.  Starting out on a full stomach before trick-or-treating may help to curb your child’s appetite for the sweet stuff.  Also, walking rather than driving is a good way to get some exercise in on this indulgent holiday. 


Putting a little more emphasis on checking out other children’s costumes and house decorations may help take their minds off the treats for a minute or two along your route.  But watch out, the article warns parents not to ban candy or toss some of it out when they are not looking.  This will probably just make your child want the treats more. 


For a complete list of the Halloween tips you can visit


What do you think of the tips offered above to help kids make healthier decisions on Halloween?


Do you have any tricks that you use on Halloween to curb the candy splurge?

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  • Salemsw By Salemsw

    I giveaway pencils and funky straws and etc... also items like snack size chip bags

  • Lusadi By Lusadi

    Instead of trick or treating, we go to local fall festivals. That way we're still out enjoying the season without the risks of door to door treating.

  • kgoodman By kgoodman

    I think the tips offered above are good. My son is not old enough to go trick or treating yet, but, when he is, we will have a rule that he can't eat any candy while actually out trick or treating and all candy must stay in the kitchen once it is in the house. He will be allowed to indulge on Halloween night, but then will get whatever is left slowly, as treats throughout the rest of the year. He won't be allowed to just gorge or keep it in his room, but he certainly won't feel deprived, either.

  • 4roosters By 4roosters

    I also give pencils out as a treat AND my kids love getting things like that as a treat as well.

  • TraceyS By TraceyS

    My youngest son LOVES candy. I mean LOVES it all, doesn't matter what kind. Its kind of weird actually b/c we don't ban it but we also don't keep a lot around the house. He's just got a great big sweet tooth. We tried the whole "stashing it away and doling it out" a few years ago and it was SO annoying. Several times every day he would beg for it. So last year we told him he could keep it in his room with the understanding that all trash went in the trash can and once it was gone, that was it. I seriously expected it to only last a day or two but it lasted for several weeks. He got a lot more "choosey" about when to eat it when he could see it was dwindling. Plus we don't do a lot of candy for Christmas stockings or Easter so he knew there wasn't going to be more coming at the next hol;iday. Luckily my son is very active so the extra calories don't really affect him- its more his teeth I worry about!

  • meowmix By meowmix

    we only go to people we know. the kids are happy with that.

  • hairs2u By hairs2u

    I believe all kids should go trick or treating. We all did it when we were kids. It is a special experience every child should have. You just need to go with them or make sure they are in an area you know. The candy should be examined and they should be taught they amount they are aloud to have. Food allergies is another issue for a lot of kids. It is so common. Most kids can't eat half of what is in the bag.

  • msfriendly By msfriendly

    You know, it's still OK to trick or treat and get candy. It's fun! Instead of going to EVERY house in the area, limit it to just a few. As with every diet and bad habit, it comes down to portion control!

    Some parents are out for hours with their kids...some even driving from house to that's just wrong!

  • meowmix By meowmix

    What cracks me up is I see TEENAGERS doing it and getting a bunch of candy too! After 12 or so, it should be over and done with!

  • nanners520 By nanners520

    I think the tips provided are a great start! I agree that one night of indulging is not going to cause a great deal of harm. It is so important to be educating children on making good choices in life, and in regard to food.

    I remember as a child getting some pretty bizarre trinkets in place of candy and not appreciating it... one person gave me a pocket dictionary!?!?! As a 7 year old, that was not what I had in mind! I also remember knowing that when the candy was gone, there would be no more. This was enough of a motivator to only eat a bit at a time. This is probably the most effective control of over-eating. I wanted to make the candy last!

    Happy Halloween!

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