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October 2017

Tricks & Treats To A Healthy Halloween

Halloween is around the corner and it can be easy for children who celebrate to load up on sugary snacks that may displace their intake of the nutrient-dense foods they need to support their development. Yet, not all foods containing sugar are unhealthy. Some of the healthiest foods, including vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, naturally contain sugars. The difference is that these naturally occurring sugars come along with fibre and protein, which provide important nutrients, regulate our blood sugar, and keep us feeling fuller for longer.

The foods high in added sugars, those we typically receive on Halloween, are the ones we should keep an eye on.

Here are some strategies to help your children manage their sugar intake from Halloween treats:

  1. Fill up on the nutritious stuff first: Help kids to avoid overeating by offering them a healthy and well-balanced meal or snack before going Trick or Treating.
  2. Plan ahead: Decide together how many pieces of candy they can enjoy at the end of the evening. Figure out how you will deal with leftovers as well – maybe sticking to just 2-3 small pieces per week.
  3. Explain your reasoning: Get the kids involved in the discussion. Explaining to them that foods that are high in added sugars are less healthy because they do not provide any important nutrients to help their bodies grow may begin to help them understand why they are not for every day and are reserved for special occasions.

Nutrition Tip: Not sure what to do with all that leftover candy that your family doesn’t enjoy? Sort through it together and give it away to others who may not have gone Trick or Treating! This will help you cut back on the amount of candy in your house once Halloween is over.

Author: Melissa Frankel, Registered Dietitian