Closeup on halloween bucket full of trick or treat candy

From Sharp Health News, a publication of Sharp HealthCare

Halloween may be every child’s dream, but the days that follow can be a parent’s nightmare. In every shape and size, candy seems to linger for weeks — creating an echo of temptation from your kids’ not-so-secret stash.

If you tend to dig a little too deep into your kid’s Halloween candy hoard, Sharp offers the following tips to keep temptation at bay:

  1. Consume enough protein and fiber. If we are not eating enough protein and fiber, we will often have cravings for sweets. The USDA recommends women consume 25 grams of fiber daily and men consume 38 grams. If you suspect you are nowhere near these targets, you may want to opt for something other than candy, such as a hard-boiled egg and some berries.
  2. Sort out the kids’ favorites. Help your child pick their favorite candy from the total bounty they received. Keep their favorites and consider discarding or donating the rest. If it’s out of sight, it’s out of mind.
  3. Pay attention to portion size. If you choose to indulge, avoid full-size candy bars. One full-size candy bar can equal three to four servings. Opting for a mini or snack size is a better bet.
  4. Be a last-minute buyer. Avoid buying candy in the weeks leading up to Halloween, as you’re more likely to indulge. Try buying candy closer to Oct. 31 and only buy what you think you need.
  5. Time candy consumption around physical activity. Carbohydrates are the body’s preferred source of fuel for exercising. A small piece of candy — a chocolate “mini” or a few fruit chews — can be a carb-rich snack that digests easily and can help the body metabolize it for fuel and energy.
  6. Plan ahead. If you feel a sugar craving coming on, think about how candy will make you feel later in the day. Take a second and reflect on whether you have better options at hand. Stock your kitchen with healthy snacks, such as vegetables and hummus, cottage cheese and fruit, protein shakes, or small slices of cheese and some grapes, so you are less tempted to eat candy as a fuel source.

The VEBA Resource Center offers many Cooking & Nutrition Classes. Join us to learn how to blend the art of food and cooking with the science of medicine to optimize your overall health and wellness – all while having fun! Check out our calendar to sign up for an upcoming class.