Healthy Halloween Hacks

October 30, 2018
Jack-o-lantern apple

OK, this really is a fun holiday—creative and family-friendly—but it also tests our limits on just how much junk we’re going to let our kids consume in the process. We’ve got your back with a couple of healthy hacks for you and yours.

PRE-GAME TACTICS:

• Let’s fill up our kids with a big healthy meal before venturing out to help them cut down on their capacity for binging their loot.

Dress up fruits and veggies with the holiday theme in mind, and while you’re at it, try implementing this idea year-round. Desert doesn’t have to be a sugar-fest when it’s creative.

• We won’t tell anyone if you’re as sneaky and give your kids Halloween bags as small as the ones we give ours. (Just say no to pillowcases and their infinite space for candy-by-the-pound.) We figure, the less they bring home, the less candy we have to eat that night after they go to bed to save them from themselves.

POST-GAME TACTICS

Inspect the candy back at home for expiration dates (yeh, gross people totally go there: last year’s candy—no joke). Also, inspect for tampering and just “say no” to homemade treats from people you don’t know.

• Arrange a fun swap session with your kids’ swag bags after they’re all home so that everyone gets their favorite treats. (This activity can end up being more fun than the acquisitions themselves as kids haggle and negotiate like stock brokers.) Put out colorful bowls for sorting and practice your best auctioneer’s banter for negotiating between them.

• You can even arrange a “buy-back” where you literally purchase their candy for money or activities that are more in line with your family’s idea of healthy fun.

• This is especially useful if your kids have food allergies but (obviously) still don’t want to miss out on the fun of acquiring the goods with their pals.

• Create a plan for staggering our kids’ daily feasting. “Out of sight, out of mind” is a sly parent trick for helping our kids to forget about the booty after a few days.

• Stash it away and after a week, suggest donating the candy to soldiers abroad, or your local police station or firehouse. Remember that day your toddler had to “give away his binky” to babies who really needed one? Yeh, that trick. But with candy.) Here is a list of organizations that accept candy donations if you need help tracking one down.

We want to hear from you: what are some of your favorite Halloween hacks?

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