Halloween is the start of holiday indulgences. With bags full of candy coming home from a successful night of Trick or Treating…how do we keep the sweet treats to a minimum? Halloween parties are also sweet temptations for us adults as well.
As we all know, too much sugar and processed foods will wreck havoc on our health. Sugar depresses the immune system, feeds unhealthy bacteria in your gut, and sends our insulin levels out o
f control. Once you start indulging in all the yummy, sticky treats of the season…it seems like we lose all our self control. Sugar is as addictive as cocaine and acts on the pleasure centers of the brain to make us want more.
As the parent, we do have control of how much of the Halloween bounty our children get. I take control of the candy filled plastic pumpkin from day one and ration out the candy. Usually by Thanksgiving, I am throwing out the least favorite of the treats. My biggest challenge is not how much my child gets…I stay pretty strong with that. My biggest challenge is how much I “sample”. They seem so small and innocent, but start counting how many “just a small bite” samples you eat and it starts to add up. Be strong…be a good example to your children!
It is possible to make fun and healthy Halloween treats for your kids and for those parties. Just use your imagination and of course the internet has a bunch of ideas.
Here are a few ideas that I have found:
Popcorn hands – I have found sources of spooky looking plastic bags that look like hands. Put one candy corn in each finger and fill the bag with popcorn. Pop your own corn so you know that
you are using healthy ingredients. Microwave popcorn is loaded with bad fats. You can use coconut or grapeseed oil (has a high cooking temperature so it won’t burn and has a mild flavor) or you can just put popcorn in a paper lunch bag…fold up the top…and pop in the microwave with no oil.
Apple Slices with slivered Almond Fangs – Just cut up apples into slices and stick almond slivers into the apple to make fangs. They are very cute!
Skelton Bones Vegetable Platter – You can use different vegetables like carrots, celery, broccoli, cherry tomatoes to make a cute skeleton. Get creative! I saw this idea as a cat skeleton. Serve with hummus and it is a big hit!
Cucumber Eye Balls – Cut thick slices of cucumber, a small amount of cream cheese on top and push an olive into the cream cheese.
Caramel Apples – This is a classic and even though you are using caramel it is still a healthier option for holiday sweets with the apple on the inside. Apples are full of beneficial fiber so will slow down the glycemic index of the caramel a little bit.
Pumpkin Smoothie – I have to have something pumpkin during this tim
e of year. Instead going for the sugar loaded pumpkin lattes I make myself a yummy pumpkin smoothie.
- 8 oz unsweetened almond milk
- 1 scoop of your favorite vanilla protein powder (I go for the vegetable based protein powders like brown rice or hemp)
- 1 cup fresh spinach
- ¼ – ½ cup canned organic pumpkin (to your taste)
- ¼ tsp pumpkin spice
- Blend with ice and enjoy!
If you want that pumpkin latte taste you can use a little coffee and leave out the spinach.
So have a fun and healthy Halloween!