Halloween is an incredibly popular holiday in the United States. And each year the amount of money we spend on candy continues to rise. But for those of us adopting a healthier lifestyle that candy can be a huge issue. We don't want our children to have the same health struggles we have and we don't want to consume the candy ourselves.
So check out these Ways To Help Your Kids Eat Less Halloween Candy (Without Eating It Yourself):
Let Them Pick a Certain Amount of Pieces- Select a number before they trick or treat and let them know that is all they can keep. When they get home they can dump everything out and select their favorites. Then you can decide what to do with the leftovers. In our family we quickly hand it back out that same night.
Donate It and Let Them See the Good it Does- Did you know you can donate your candy to Operation Gratitude? The candy is sent to our Troops, Veterans and First Responders. The candy is included in care packages and distributed to communities. Or you can call your local Ronald McDonald House (or something similar) and see if they can accept it. The soup kitchen and homeless shelters would likely take it as well. Let the kids divide it into little baggies to be handed out and then drop it off.
Don't Make It Seem Forbidden- The more you can keep Halloween candy neutral, the better. By making the candy something elusive they will want it more. Hopefully your children are already seeing you regulate your food and this is just another food. People who were deprived of sweets as a child seem to gravitate toward them as adults. Take the stigma away and remove the mystery.
Replace It With Another Reward- My niece and nephews get to make a decision each Halloween. They can keep all their candy or they can keep the ten best pieces and get a LEGO set or toy of their choosing (with a dollar cap). So far they have never kept all their candy. They grab their ten favorites and the rest they dump back in the candy bowl and hand out to trick or treaters. That way all the candy is never in the house to be tempting to the adults trying to be healthy.
Let Them Determine "Enough"- If your kids are older sit down and have a discussion about candy. Odds are they already know it's not good for them because they don't get it all the time. So allow them to choose a number of pieces they would like to keep and then toss the rest of it. I know when I was a kid I really didn't care what happened to the tootsie rolls and lollipops anyway.
Set Up Specific Times For Eating The Candy- Maybe the candy is an after school snack. Or you put one piece in their lunch. If they know the candy is for certain times it will keep them from snacking on it. And once you hit a deadline the rest is removed from the house.
Keep It Out of Sight- I never eat more candy then when it is sitting in a dish in front of me. All day long I will grab a piece or two until it's empty. Take the Halloween candy and store it somewhere out of sight. The less they think about it the less they will ask for it. Eventually you can just throw it away and they will have moved on to other topics.
Follow these simple recommendations and hopefully the candy won't take over your house!