You don't need a wand to make Halloween healthy. These 11 nutrition and fitness tips will keep the holiday from haunting you when trick-or-treating is over.
Halloween may arguably be one of the best holidays. It’s far less stressful than most. It’s fun. It allows people an excuse to let their weird and creative sides out for an entire day, maybe even spilling into the week as decorations and pumpkin carving join the event. There’s no need for extensive travel. You also have a pretty wide choice when it comes to who you spend it with, unlike the more rigid holidays coming up. It’s flexible and fantastic.
Unfortunately, it ties with other holidays when it comes to how healthy it is for you. Candy everywhere, and not just kids end up eating it. When the treat part of the tradition began, the obesity epidemic hadn’t swept the world, and it wasn’t as big a problem for kids and adults to indulge one day at the end of October. Now, you may want to be wise with your choices. We can help.
Buy Candy Late
If you buy your candy early, you will be tempted to open it and sample it beforehand. If you must have big bags of candy in your house early, lock it away and don’t open the package until the first ring of your doorbell.
It’s better to run out of candy early than to have a ton leftover that you’ll wind up eating.
Don’t Get What You Like
It’s very tempting to buy big bags of your favorites, just in case they all don’t disappear by the end of the night. Don’t do that. Buy something you don’t love.
Enjoy a big, healthy, filling meal before you or your kids head out for the night. Your kids will be less likely to snack on all their candy before they get home, and you will take it easy on any party snacks too.
Plan a Hike
Map out the neighborhood to make sure the kids get some exercise as they trick or treat. You can also take a walk early to show off your costume while there’s still some daylight out to fully appreciate it.
Encourage your kids (and yourself) to exercise some self-control. Teach your kids to only take one piece at each house while you take it easy on the candy, snacks, drinks, and other goodies at the same time.
Pass Out Non-Candy Treats
Some kids may roll their eyes, but many will love the other options. Pass out small toys, packs of trail mix, sugar-free gum, snack-packs of fruits or vegetables, boxes of raisins, clementines dressed as jack o’ lanterns, crayons, coloring books, stickers, sidewalk chalk, and anything else a kid will still enjoy.
You are in charge of the candy your kids eat. Buy it from them. Dole it out a piece at a time throughout several weeks while pairing it with a healthy food or activity like an apple, a walk, a banana, or a few jumping jacks. Sell it to the dentist so your child has some holiday cash to spend. Let them trade it in for a toy, game, pair of jeans, or something that they want. Be creative and make it fun and a win-win for you and your kids.
Frighten with Health
You can make some fun party foods that are convincingly creepy with fruits, nuts, vegetables, and other healthy options. Bananas make great ghosts. Bob for apples. Peeled grapes make amazing slimy eyeballs in drinks or boo salad. Crunchy celery makes yummy skeleton bones.
Dance your heart out this Halloween. If you’re hosting a party, make it an active one. Do a three legged zombie race or ghostly freeze tag. The more you move, the more your body takes care of you.
Don’t stress too much about this holiday. Stress does terrible things to your body, encouraging weight gain, depleting neurotransmitters, taxing your adrenal glands, and making you feel run down. That means forgive yourself if you break your diet and your fitness goals this Halloween too. You can pick up again next week and make it fantastic.