Halloween is around the corner, which for most children means bags of free candy and a chance to build a stockpile of sweets for the months ahead. No surprise, Halloween can also present parents with a variety of challenges, especially sugar overload.
I always tell patients that it’s OK to eat candy on Halloween, but it’s important to have a plan. Here are some ways to limit your child’s sugar intake without a making a scary scene.
Teach your child to eat all foods in moderation.
Although sweets are blamed for much tooth decay, all foods — even healthy alternatives to candy, such as fruit and nuts — can promote tooth decay if eaten in excess. Children (like adults) should eat all foods in moderation. Read nutrition labels to avoid foods and drinks loaded with sugar, fructose and other sweeteners.
Set up a candy bank.
Allow your child to make daily withdrawals from the bank and monitor the progress. This way, you can control how much candy your child consumes.
Go trick-or-treating on a full stomach.
Staying full can limit the urge to gorge on Halloween sweets.
Collect Less Candy
Limit the amount of candy your child collects by having her/him use a smaller treat bag and calling it quits once the bag is filled. You can also set a time limit on her/him trick-or-treating or visit only houses within a certain walking distance.
Trade Candy For Cash
Consider forking out some of your own cash in exchange for your kid’s candy, then encourage kids to donate the stash to a local shelter or a branch of the military. If your child is too young to be interested in cash, consider swapping the loot for a toy they have had their eye on.
However you choose to prevent sugar overload this holiday, be sure your child knows what to expect beforehand so there are no terrifying surprises.
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