A Spooky Halloween Begins and Ends with Good Nutrition
Pumpkin muffins for a healthy Halloween.
Image courtesy of Cindy Silver.
Will it be a spooky Halloween for you? Good-spooky, that is. If you want to set up your family for the best Halloween ever, here are some nutrition tips that will be good to know – and good to do!
Before Going Out on Halloween
1. Get a solid meal into your kiddos to energize them in a way that makes skipping through the neighborhood or dancing at a community party really fun. They will need healthy food for sustained energy. For example:
- Breakfast for Dinner: Whole grain toaster waffle + scrambled eggs + cut up apple or pear + water
- Sandwich/Baked Fries for Dinner: Easy sandwich of ham, cheese, tuna salad or egg salad + baked sweet potato fries + grapes + water
- Chili: Beef or chicken chili topped with shredded cheese + baked corn tortilla chips + cut up pineapple + water
2. Get your kiddos well hydrated for the evening. Be sure they drink water with their meal as a start. Then, you might want to ‘strap on’ a water bottle to their costume as well, for a healthy drink when they’re thirsty and on-the-go.
3. Get some ground rules in place about eating candy while trick or treating, or at their community party. Every family is different on this; but one handful (theirs, not yours) seems reasonable.
4. Get physical activity on your kiddos’ to-do list. Skipping, running, kicking the falling leaves — with mom or dad’s OK — puts the best spin on Halloween.
After Going Out on Halloween
1. Get your kiddos home at a time that doesn’t push it — cranky, after all, doesn’t make for the best Halloween ever.
2. Get out their candy haul and sort through it for unwrapped and/or damaged wrapper pieces. These are probably best to trash right away.
3. Get a system in place for candy enjoyment, not overdose. Try the one-a-day rule for little ones. Try the 2-a-day rule for older kiddos. A bowl with each kiddo’s name on it might work well in addition to storing the bowls out of sight.
4. Get a buy-back system going for kiddos who are about 8-12 years old. In other words, buy back their candy at one penny for the little stuff, one nickel for the medium pieces and one dime for the biggest pieces. You’d be surprised how this may work.
Making the Glow of Halloween Go On & On
There are many seasonal foods for fall and making them can become a healthy tradition for you and your kiddos at Halloween and beyond. Here are some favorites of mine — please give them a try!
Pumpkin Muffins — They’re made with canned pumpkin and whole wheat flour. Recipe right here.
Fall Roasted Veggies — It’s versatile with nearly any combination of vegetables. Recipe right here.
Fall Apple Crisp — It’s low in sugar and huge in flavor. Recipe right here.
How will you promote a super fun, nutritious Halloween this year?