Tips for a healthy Trick-or-Treat

HEALTH – Many parents dread the arrival of Halloween with its tooth-rotting, unhealthy fare. It is not unusual for kids to arrive home from trick-or-treating with bags full of sugary, calorie-laden candies and chocolates.  Far be it for you to spoil the fun and take it away, right?

So what can you do about it? You can buck the trend this Halloween by resisting the urge to pass out candy to trick-or-treaters at your house this year. Instead, make a change in your neighborhood and opt for treats that are healthy, useful or even surprising. Challenge kids to expect something a little different this Halloween and they may just have more fun.

The following is a list of nutritious, tasty alternatives to pass out to trick-or-treaters this Halloween.

  • Organic juice boxes or pouches from Honest Kids.
  • Organic apple sauce snack packs.
  • Bare Fruit trial size packs.
  • Boxes of organic raisins and, where available, other organic dried fruits.
  • Trial size packs of dried veggie chips, (i.e. Terra Chips).
  • Spooky S’mores Clif Kid’s Organic ZBar.
  • Individual bags of Lesser Evil popcorn and other varieties.
  • Pre-packaged apple slices or carrots sticks.
  • Low fat milkshakes or soy beverages in tetra packs.
  • Pretzel, mini boxes of cereal, or crackers.
  • Individual unpopped plain popcorn bags.

The following is a list of fun, non-food alternatives to promote health and to get children up and moving to use the extra calories they consume this Halloween.

Non-food Treats

  • Glow sticks
  • Pencils
  • Pencil toppers and fancy erasers
  • Markers or glitter pens
  • Stickers, including reflective safety stickers
  • Rub-on or stick-on temporary tattoos
  • Slime
  • Playdough
  • Crayons
  • Coloring tablets
  • Children’s magazines or comic books
  • Bottles of bubbles
  • Coins (nickels, dimes, quarters)
  • Whistles

Treats to Promote Activity

  • Bouncy ball
  • Jump rope
  • Sidewalk chalk for drawing a hopscotch or foursquare game
  • Beanbag for hacky sack
  • Plastic or foam flier

Remember, with childhood diabetes and obesity increasing at alarming rates, it may be time to move away from the same age-old candy treats in order to make Halloween a healthier and more inclusive holiday for all. Here’s to safe, fun, and nutritious trick or treating. Happy Halloween!