Halloween is merely days away and for most it brings feelings of excitement and intrigue – especially if you’re young and love dressing up, decorating your home, and giving out treats. For others, however – for those of us struggling to maintain a healthy weight or lose a few pounds – Halloween is more like a nightmare. Here are a handful of things you can do to ensure you are able to participate in the fun without cramming down a zillion extra calories.
Don’t Buy Candy Until Halloween Day
Hopefully it’s not too late for you. The longer the candy is in the house, the more tempted you will be to eat it. According to WebMD, a single snack-sized candy bar can contain 100 calories – just one. Eat a couple of those things because they’re small and you’ll add a few hundred calories to your diet in a single day. It only takes 3,500 calories to gain a pound, so you could see the weight gain creep up on you in no time flat. Buying your candy on Halloween day will ensure you don’t have it in the days before to munch on. And if you have leftovers at the end of the night? Dump it all into that last lucky kid’s bag.
Don’t Give Out Candy
Boring, right? Nah. Why not ditch the candy concept altogether this year? Children, especially younger ones, really love things like spooky plastic rings, fake tattoos, and stickers. You can grab things like these in your local Dollar Store or discount venue and have plenty to give the kids. Trust me – they’ll have so much candy by the end of the day they really won’t miss yours.
Don’t Deprive Yourself
Truth? You really don’t have to deprive yourself. You have to control yourself. Treat your daily dose of candy as a special treat. Only eat it after dinner, when you’re full on real, nutritious foods. Don’t have it as a snack between breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Treat it as a 100-calorie dessert and do it while you’re still sort of full. Later on, if you’re really hungry, grab a piece of fruit. You really won’t miss the sugar and you’ll be eating something more fulfilling and better for your body.
Get the Extras Out of the House – STAT
Get the extra Halloween candy out of the house as soon as humanly possible. You already know there are things you and your kids won’t eat. And you already know there are things you will eat just because it’s in the house. Set some guidelines as to how much candy your kids can keep and then make a plan for the rest. Dentists offices often run programs where you can bring in your candy in exchange for a special, non-food treat and they in turn donate your sugary goodness to the troops. You might also consider donating your extra candy to a food bank, senior citizen home, or homeless shelter. Those who have less than you will certainly appreciate the treat.
Out of Sight, Out of Mind
Choose a special storage spot for your Halloween candy. Your kids will obviously want to see where their goodies are kept, but try this mental trick. Place some of their candy in a special container on the counter but put the rest in a bag and store it in a cabinet where it can’t be seen. If you don’t see it, you won’t think about eating it as much. Keep the container on the counter filled for about a week or so, so that the kids feel like the candy supply is still there. After that, let the container go empty. The fascination that comes with Halloween will likely die down and your kids won’t even notice that you’re not refilling the jar. They’ll stop asking for the sweet stuff, and you can quietly ditch the leftovers.
Halloween can be fun without ruining your diet or healthy lifestyle. Make some healthier treats and make sure your family is eating 3 square meals each day. The thrill of the ghoulish festival will die away soon enough.
About the Author: Velva Marchena loves the holidays but hates the impact they have on her waistline. She distracts herself by following UFX Markets Trading trends and by writing about investments and personal finance.