Costumes are a huge part of Halloween, but the candy and sweets are equally as exciting for kids and parents alike. While the costumes are limited to just the holiday, the treats often last well into November. We understand no parent wants to be the “bad guy” and tell their kids they can’t eat all of the candy they got while trick-or-treating. So, here is some guidance for parents on how to help your kids enjoy treats in moderation.
Before the trick-or-treating starts
Before kids set out for trick-or-treating, serve a healthy meal so they’re not hungry while filling their bags with candy. This will help reduce the amount of snacking while out for the night.
Consider buying Halloween treats other than candy. Kids love non-food treats like stickers, erasers, crayons, pencils, temporary tattoos, false vampire teeth or bubbles, which can all be found in party supply stores. Healthier sweet treats like sealed packages of raisins and dried fruit are also great choices. Small boxes of cereal and sugar-free gum are good choices too, along with salty treats like pretzels, trail mix and popcorn.
All good things in moderation
Anyone who has gotten a tummy ache from eating too many sweets knows that all good things are best in moderation. Here are some strategies parents can use to help kids practice moderation with their Halloween candy.
Keep an eye on it
- Know how much candy your kids collected while trick or treating.
- Store candy somewhere other than your child’s bedroom.
- Don’t leave candy out in a large bowl for kids to sample at will.
- Consider buying back some of your children’s Halloween stash. This acknowledges that the candy belongs to them but gives them an extra treat in the form of some pocket change.
- Encourage your kids to be mindful of their snacking, and to stop when they feel full or sick.
- Be a role model and practice moderation yourself!
And remember: Halloween is a single day on the calendar, so it’s alright to be somewhat lenient about candy. Just be sure to talk to your children about how your family plans to handle the rest of the sweets. As long as the candy doesn’t get in the way of healthy meals, your family is well on their way to a happy and healthy Halloween!