It is that time of the year! Trick or treat, Halloween celebration is approaching in days. Kids look forward to going out on Halloween day for two things – they get to dress in their favorite costume and they get lot of candies, varieties of candies. Children around the world, irrespective of their religion love to celebrate Halloween for these two reasons. It is fun, kids go out walk in their costumes and get candies from neighborhood houses!
Yes, it is fun, but candies? Nutritionally and dentally speaking Halloween candies can affect kids health. It is not just one or two candies, there are varieties of candies collected in buckets and bags to consume and kids does not want to give up their hard earn treat. Many parents control their kids and hide the candies or restrict kids eating candies. Small size snickers, just two of them (serving size) contain 160 calories or 8% of the daily allotment for kids, 3 grams saturated fat (daily limit is 20 grams). Now, you know why parents need to put restriction on candies.
What happens when kids consume candy?
Sugar is not always harmful. However, for children eating too much sugar can be harmful in the form candy, soda etc. Because kids are naturally drawn to sugar and sweet flavors and tend to over eat sugar in the form of candies.
- Tooth decay: Sugar increases tooth decay when it gets stuck on teeth
- Obesity: It is one of the biggest health problems in children. Insufficient motion and lot of energy consumption in the form sugar results in obesity.
- Addiction: If candies, chocolates contain caffeine it affects nervous system, causes nervousness, tension and restlessness.
How parents can take control on Halloween candies?
- Give a small bag or small container for children to collect candies. Their container will fill fast and there will be less collection of candies.
- If you are giving candies for trick or treat children, don’t give handful of candies. Instead, give one or two candies. Many parents will appreciate your gesture.
- Accompany children for Trick or treat and tell them to take one candy in houses they go for treat
- Make sure the candies they are collecting are good ones
- After coming home go through and separate those that does not suit your child’s health. Some chocolates can have nuts and could cause allergic reactions.
- Expert say that on Halloween day allow children to eat as many candies as they want. They might eat a few for one or two days and their excitement fades after 2-3 days. Generally, kids will stop eating candies after 3-4 days. In one- or two-days kids health will not spoil. Don’t forget to talk about moderate consumption of sugar and candies.
- Allow kids to chose the candy they want (after you go through the candy basket and take out the ones which does not suit their health)
- On Halloween day prepare special, interesting meal that fills your family stomach. Your kids stomach will be satisfied with real food and candies will be saved for next day!
- Have child brush teeth after eating candy
- Keep away children from candy during meals.
- Till the bucket of candies finish, kids will demand candies. Chose proper time to give one candy, preferably after the main meal.
- Select certain days to give candy or use it as an appreciation for their good conduct.
- Allow child to select 1 or 2 candies as desert after main meal.
- Continue to offer balanced nutritious meals, snacks, fruits and colorful veggies – this will help them understand importance of healthy meal and snacks.
- Talk to children about giving away some candies for good cause, encourage them to share.
Halloween is an exciting celebration time for kids. They love to dress up just like their heroes, they get a chance to put costume the way they want. Don’t disappoint kids, participate in their joy. Take the opportunity to tell and discuss about healthy meal, tell them about affect of candy and sugar on health. Kids will look up to their parents and will learn meaning of healthy and unhealthy food.
Author: Sumana Rao | Posted on: October 24, 2019