Remember those old SAT analogies? Halloween is to Candy as Christmas is to… Gifts! With a holiday largely focused around a tradition of dressing up in costumes and going from house to house gathering copious amounts of treats, candy is pretty much unavoidable.
If you have young children going out in the neighborhood on the hunt for sweets, expect them to bring back pounds of these trick-gotten-gains. Once the candy winds up being poured out of the bucket into a giant mound in the middle of your living room, the sorting, sharing, trading and eating portion begins. This part of Halloween is an important family tradition and a great bonding experience for you and your kids.
Even if you don’t have young children, expect candy to be everywhere around Halloween. Whether you’re buying candy to be offered as treat for the little monsters knocking on your door, or simply enjoying candy out of a bowl at a Halloween party, expect to get your fair share. Since most candy does not go bad for a while, most of us will wind up eating the Halloween leftovers at some point.
So, is there such a thing as healthy Halloween candy? Can we partake in this enormous intake of sugar and come out of it healthy on November 1st? Although Halloween candy is not likely to make any successful diets anytime soon, there are some candies that are a little healthier than others… Being a little choosy with your Halloween treats can potentially help you out in cutting a lot of unhealthy stuff out of your, and your child’s October 31st diet.
First and foremost: Sugar, and the sugar-high that comes with it is pretty much unavoidable as far as Halloween candy goes. Be sure to keep your kids from eating too much of their haul on Halloween night. Sugar is also bad for your teeth: rinsing your mouth out with water immediately after eating sugary candy is a great way to reduce the damage to your teeth. Keep in mind, brushing vigorously immediately after sugar can actually damage your enamel, so rinse with water, and wait a bit. Keep in mind, the nutrition facts label on the back of the candy pouches is your friend… compare candies, and avoid ones with excessive sugar, fat, saturated fat, trans fat, hydrogenated oil, and sodium. You should also encourage your kids to be mindful of nutrition facts… make it a fun game of compare and contrast for them, while teaching them the importance of the right ingredients. Last but not least: chocolate. Milk chocolate may be sweeter, but dark chocolate has less fat from milk products, and is actually a lot better for you.
Now that you are armed with knowledge about how to we get tricked, how not to get tricked and how to enjoy treats, you are ready for Halloween 2014! We wish you a spooky, scary and sweet Halloween!