Halloween 2008–I Want Candy!

photo by Leslie Kelly (who doesn’t let her child eat all this candy)

Maria-Paula Carrillo, registered dietitian of Children’s Medical Center, Dallas, offers these great tips fun and tasty alternatives to candy as well as how to keep the late night tummy aches away.

Alright, Halloween kicks off the holiday season when it comes to all sorts of goodies (sugar, fat). How do we keep the fun in the holiday season without allowing our children to glutton themselves on candy?

– Make sure your little trick or treaters don’t go out on an empty stomach.  Start the evening by eating a healthy dinner before going out on the streets. Hopefully this will keep them from overdoing it on the sweets.

– Enjoy decorating for the season!  You can even consider starting a neighborhood contest for the scariest/most decorated house.  On Halloween night you could go see different houses around the block and vote on which one has the best decorations.  If you set the tradition of focusing on other activities, the candy takes second place.

What are some great alternatives to giving out candy for trick-or-treaters?

-Stickers, pencils, coins, glow in the dark toys, balloons, and other inexpensive Halloween trinkets are good non food choices.

– Pre-packaged dried fruit, peanut butter crackers (watch out for those with allergies!), Rice cereal treats, sugar-free gelatin, 100 calorie packs can be better than sugar-filled candy.

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