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  • HalloweenBy Laura Koenig Rivkin, CHHC, CPT

    Author of “A Whole New You: To Your Good Health”

     

    Halloween is a fun time for kids and adults. However, it doesn’t only have to focus on trick-or-treating and having a contest to see who gets the most candy every year. With child obesity rates rising, sugar in children’s diets are quite high. Reducing the temptation of eating more than a few pieces of candy on this holiday is more than enough to satisfy anyone’s sweet tooth. Here are some suggestions to follow and remember have fun and be safe!!

    Do’s

    Make sure you feed your kids a healthy meal or healthy fiber rich snack before going trick-or-treating. This way they will be full, have more lasting energy, and won’t fill up on candy.

    Pack a bottle of water and cut up piece of fruit, such as apples, pears or a few grapes.

    Dried fruit, can replace candy, while still high in sugar, is a much healthier option. Get mini raisin boxes or fruit leather.

    Encourage your kids and their friends to opt out of eating candy while out.

    Make it a point to walk for at least 20-30 minutes, to encourage exercise. Point out the decorations and the beautiful fall leaves.

    Come up with some prizes when finished. They can “trade up” for cool stickers, a special toy or even money. Keep the prize appropriate for the age of your child.

    Donate a good portion of the candy to the Armed Forces or other organizations.

    Don’ts

    Don’t give in to your whining child to have candy while trick-or-treating. Tell them they can have a few pieces, once you check them for safety.

    Don’t give them a very large bag or pillowcase to use. Instead pick the right size bag that will make it look like there is more than really is.

    Don’t make a poor example, by eating the candy yourself, and then telling your children, they can’t have any at that time.

    Don’t have children go out alone or meet someone alone. It is best to travel together or in groups.

    For Parties:

    Here are some suggestions for healthier snacks:

    Cut up veggies: carrots, celery, cucumber with yogurt dip or guacamole

    Apples or bananas cut up with various kinds of nut butters to spread on

    Grapes

    Gummy fruit (without high fructose corn syrup)

    Dried fruit (unsulphured)

    Hot air popcorn

    Organic mini chocolate squares

    Pumpkin seeds in various flavors

    Pumpkin Muffins (see recipe below)

     

    Pumpkin Muffins

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees

    Ingredients

    1 ¾ cups whole wheat pastry flour

    ¾ teaspoon salt

    1/3 cup 100% maple syrup

    2 teaspoons baking powder

    1 teaspoon cinnamon

    ½ teaspoon nutmeg

     Beat in a separate bowl:

    2 eggs

     Add to the eggs:

    2 tablespoons oil

    ¾ cup milk or try coconut milk for more flavor

    1 cup canned pumpkin

    2 tablespoons raw pumpkin seeds (optional)

     Combine the wet and dry ingredients with a few swift strokes(don’t over mix). Fill greased muffin cups two thirds of the way full.

    If desired, sprinkle a few pumpkin seeds on top of each muffin andbake for 20 to 25 minutes. Makes a dozen muffins.

    For more information and other health tips visit:

    www.awholenewyou.org