Ah, Halloween. Trick-or-treating, candy, ghosts and goblins and too many empty calories! Don’t get me wrong, it’s a fabulous holiday that all kids and young-at-heart adults love. But given the explosive rise in childhood obesity and increases in the incidence of type 2 diabetes among adolescent, we should collectively be concerned. Here are some ideas on how to lessen the nutritional impact of this fun holiday.
1) Limit daily consumption of candy as much as possible. A child may have only 100 kcals of discretionary calories available each day to maintain proper body weight. More kcals from junk foods, and weight and adiposity rise over time.
2) Buy your candy a day or two before the holiday. This way, no one is tempted to have a sugar hog fest and you might save money as these items typically go on sale as the day approaches.
3) Have dinner before going trick-or-treating. This one is for rather obvious reasons…less likelihood of snacking on the candy as one goes door-to-door.
4) Have an active evening. Take a longer walk to enjoy the decorations and burn some calories while you’re at it.
5) Practice portion control and know which ones are the healthier choices. Limit the amount that children can eat each day and don’t necessarily trust them to do this on their own. Placing the stash out of their reach or where you can control it is best.
So, have a happy Halloween and stay healthy!