It’s that time of year again where your favorite candies and cookies in orange and black wrappers are everywhere. Halloween candy is hard to resist because these seasonal treats hit the shelves just after Labor Day and stick around until long after October 31. Interested in managing your weight during the Halloween season? Here are some tips to help you succeed!
At the Store
- Buy candy that you don’t like or is not at the top of your list. That way you will be tempted to eat less.
- Smaller is better! Go for the miniature or bite size individually wrapped candy. This way you have built in portion control.
- Shop as late as possible. The earlier your buy it, the more time those bags sit in your house tempting you to open them. Go just a few days before—or even the day of Halloween, if possible to purchase your candy for the neighborhood kids.
- Be aware of samples. This is a time when shops are handing out sugary samples to entice you into their stores, or keep you there if you are already shopping. While it works for the store, it is not so great for you. Even though they may be free, they are not calorie-free!
- Double knot your bags. Once your trick-or-treat candy does make it home and you start making your treat bags, place it all in a plastic grocery bag or garbage bag, and double or even triple knot the bag.
- Don’t allow yourself to go into the bag. Once you open the bag, it’s that much easier to go back for seconds or thirds! Leave those bags closed until Halloween night when that first trick-or-treater rings the doorbell.
- Give away the excess. After Halloween, purge your kitchen cabinets of the remaining temptations. Bring the extra candy to work or give it to someone who can distribute it elsewhere!
- Step away from the candy dish. Putting candy in a candy dish is a recipe for disaster! Keep the candy out of reach and out of sight. Studies show that when food is in proximity, people are more likely to eat it. Out of sight can lead to out of mind! Plus, it is never a good idea to eat candy straight from the dish. This can lead to mindless overeating and no real sense of calories or serving size.
- If you feel you ABSOLUTELY can’t resist, pre-portion yourself a small serving and stick to it!
Make a Halloween Plan
- Set goals for yourself. Before the day arrives think about what you want to accomplish. Keep your goals in mind, and aim for moderation. A few pieces of candy can fit into your plan, but keep it at that.
- Don’t go trick or treating hungry! Eat a balanced meal before going trick-or-treating to help curb the sugar cravings. This way you will be less tempted to eat everything in sight.
- Bump up your exercise routine. The week of Halloween, add a little more time to your exercise routine or take a few extra walks that week.
- Remember a healthy diet is one that includes fun foods like candy but the goal is moderation. Choose one special treat to enjoy on Halloween! Sit down, eat it slowly and enjoy!
There’s More to Halloween than Candy
- Enjoy all the other seasonal festivities, that don’t involve food. There is SO much about fall to enjoy. Get involved in fun activities so that candy will take a backset.
- Go apple picking or visit a pumpkin patch and then carve a jack-o-lantern. Decorate your home with scarecrows and dried corn stalk
- Relish the taste of pumpkin. Go for some of the healthy seasonal food. Try roasting pumpkin seeds. Or make something with pumpkin—pumpkin soup or a smoothie with pumpkin, rather than the pumpkin pie.