Tuesday, October 23, 2012

10 Healthy Halloween Treats

Halloween rolls around every year and children look forward to dressing up to Trick or Treat so they can amass piles of candy and chips. Many parents, including myself, wish there were healthier options that Trick or Treaters collected or healthier ways to cut down on the excessive sweets and snacks around this time of year. I want to assure you that there are a few great options your family can partake in to cut down on the sugars and help promote a healthier lifestyle in your community!!

Many dentists offer a candy buy back program where you can trade in Trick or Treat spoils for gifts and prizes. In Pekin, Dr. David Kuban will be giving kids $1 for every pound of candy they turn in with a 10 pound limit and he is planning on shipping that candy to troops over seas. He also has some pretty spiffy light up toothbrushes he is giving away as well. MapleShade Dental Group in Peoria and Dunlap are on their third year of the candy buy back program with no limit on how much can be traded in. In fact, last year they collected more than 500 pounds of candy from local Trick or Treaters!! So parents should definitely check out these options since many give away prizes for movie tickets, gaming cards, pizza coupons, and of course toothbrushes and toothpaste to cut down on cavities!! You can always do a candy trade in at your house as well in order to cut down on the candy consumed and trade the kids for a gift they've really been wanting to get their hands on!

So how can you set an example in your community? Try handing out healthier options than candy and chips to Trick or Treaters and make sure you spread the news to your neighbors so they get the memo that healthier options are better options for your neighborhood. I've listed 10 Healthier Halloween Treats below.

1.) Frozen yogurt sticks (this way they stay nice and cold for the rest of the night)
2.) Bags of Pumpkin Seeds
3.) Cereal or Granola Bars (check the label to make sure they aren't high in sugars)
4.) Carrot Sticks (there's many single serving options out there and you can always throw in a small thing of peanut butter for kids to dip them in since ranch wouldn't be feasible to keep from spoiling)
5.) String Cheese
6.) Popcorn Balls (don't opt for the caramel coated)
7.) Peanuts or Trail Mix (see if you can find one with dried fruit)
8.) Pretzels (try for those with sea salt)
9.) Sandwich crackers (not the best options but healthier than a mouthful of candy)
10.) Toothbrush (a great addition to the loot that will make kid's smiles a bit brighter)

Stay safe and healthy this Halloween!