Happy, Healthy Halloween!
Halloween is here and with it comes the candy. While it’s okay to let your kids enjoy some sweets, it’s important to make sure they don’t go overboard. Eating too much candy can get in the way of healthy foods and nutrients in milk that growing kids need in their diet. Try these tips to help your trick-or-treaters enjoy the fun while avoiding a sugar rush.
Fuel Up First
Start the evening off with some fun and healthy snacks to fuel your kids up before trick-or-treating. Filling up on protein-rich foods and whole grains may keep them from eating too much candy later. Here are some spooktacular snacks to try.
- Candy Corn Parfait. Made with fresh fruit and protein-packed Greek yogurt, this tasty treat looks like candy corn, but it’s so much healthier.
- Bat Cheese on Full Moon Crackers. Use a cookie cutter to cut cheese into bat shapes and pair with whole grain crackers. These Jack O’Lantern Cheese Bites and Cheese Monsters also give calcium-rich cheese a spooky spin.
- Chocolate milk. Did you know it’s the official beverage of Halloween? It’s a sweet treat, but unlike candy, it contains vitamins and minerals like calcium and vitamin D that growing kids need.
Offer Better Options
Instead of candy, look for pre-packaged snack foods to offer trick-or-treaters like pretzels and crispy rice treats. Other kid-approved favorites include Goldfish® Crackers, popcorn, and dried fruit snacks.
Give it Away
Talk to your children about sharing their extra candy. Have them pick out a couple of favorites to keep and then agree to give away the extra. A lot of dentists even offer buy-back programs.
Another fun and easy way to get rid of extra candy is the “Switch Witch.” She swoops in at night, takes candy and leaves books, toys and other prizes.
Laura Marbury, MS, RD, LD