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6 Healthy Tricks for Tackling Halloween Treats

By Dana Babeu, R.D. | October 30, 2019

 

Whether you’ve had weight loss surgery – Gastric Bypass or Gastric Sleeve – or you’re just looking to  stay on track this Halloween, you don’t have to be scared by the thought of easy access to bowls of candy. With these healthy Halloween tricks and treats, you can celebrate Halloween without sacrificing all the fun. 

 

 

Trick or Treat for the Exercise, Not the Candy                                                                                

Taking your kids door-to-door is a great excuse for a long walk in the beautiful fall weather.  Don’t have kids? Tag along with a friend or neighbor who does. While you’re out, put someone else in charge of handing out the treats at your door or take them with you and hand them out as you go.

Eat Balanced Meals Throughout the Day and a Substantial Snack

If you’re going trick-or-treating, it’s best to meal plan for that day. Eat regular, balanced meals throughout the day, and before heading out to collect treats - be sure to eat a substantial snack. Focusing on fiber, protein and plenty of water will help keep blood sugar stable and may reduce the urge to visit the candy bowl.

Be Selective

We’re all tempted to overindulge when we have access to our favorite foods. When buying candy, try buying your least favorite so you won’t be tempted to eat any leftovers. Know your triggers and choose your treats wisely. 

Limit Your Intake

If you choose to indulge, do so with a set plan. Try choosing 2 small items that will leave you feeling satisfied without setting you on a path to overindulging. Some of my favorite choices are a snack-sized bag of peanut M&Ms or an Almond Joy. 

Skip the Candy

Snack-sized bags of pretzels, cheddar crackers, popcorn and granola bars are lower-sugar alternatives to the traditional candy deluge. Or choose to give out stickers, erasers or other non-food treats. You may be surprised by how pleased some trick-or-treaters are to receive treats that are out of the norm. Plus, your treats will stand out from the rest.

Donate Leftover Candy  

Encourage kids to choose their favorite items to keep and donate the rest to a local organization such as Operation Gratitude or find a dentist who participates in the annual Halloween Candy Buyback .  Resist the urge to take it to the office or rely on willpower to thwart temptation.  Put the kids’ stashes in a high cabinet and get the rest out of arm’s reach.

 

With a little planning and your health goals in mind , it’s possible to have a fun, safe and healthier Halloween. 

Dana Babeu, RD, is a registered dietitian at New Jersey Bariatric Center, a medical & surgical weight loss center with offices in Springfield, Somerville, Hoboken, East Brunswick, Hackettstown and Sparta, New Jersey. She provides pre-operative and post-operative nutritional counseling to New Jersey Bariatric Center’s Gastric Bypass, Gastric Sleeve, LAP-BAND (gastric band) and revision patients, in addition to dietary counseling for patients in our Medical Weight Loss program.
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