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Healthier Halloween

Posted on 10/30/2014

Our registered dietitian, Rene Ficek, has a few ideas for a healthier Halloween for your little ghosts and goblins. Here are Rene’s healthier Halloween suggestions...enjoy! 

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If you think children get way too much candy every Halloween, you are not alone! The candy will not only encourage cavities, but will also prevent kids from eating healthy food. This year get your kids involved in some seasonal cooking, but the healthy way. They can have their treats and eat them too!  

Here are my “go to” treats for fall festivities: 

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds -  This is an especially great idea if you carve your own pumpkins. Get kids involved and use all parts of the pumpkin. Simply clean seeds, toss with olive oil, and roast in a 375-degree oven until brown. Pumpkin seeds are rich in vitamins and minerals, and a great snack to have on hand for all those Halloween parties.  

Popcorn -  Instead of making popcorn balls that are usually full of high fructose corn syrup, season popcorn with a spice blend, load into a plastic glove and wrap up with a colorful ribbon. This makes for a tasty treat and an even more fun presentation.  

Baked Apple Chips -  With the abundance of apples this time of year, why not make apple chips? These are easy to make and will help the kiddos to get all their recommended daily servings of fruit. Simply slice thin and bake in a 250-degree oven for 2 hours. They come out nice and crisp, and are a great swap for potato chips too!  

Clementines with faces -  Have k ids draw faces on clementines in order to resemble carved pumpkins. Use a permanent marker or better yet- decorate them with stickers! Fun for the kiddos to do, and a delicious yet healthy treat to giveaway.  

Goblin Apples -  Take a green apple and wrap it up with gauze. Place two candy eyes (or any type of plastic eyes will do) to make the apple resemble a goblin. Give away as is, or wrap up with a peanut butter cup for a complete healthy snack!  

And if you don’t like giving away candy at Halloween, try giving these away instead…  

  • Cereal bars
  • Snack packets of dried fruit, baked pretzels, nut and seeds (e.g. peanuts*, unsalted almonds, sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds)
  • Trail mix
  • Animal crackers
  • Gold fish crackers
  • Graham crackers
  • 100 calorie packs of various products
  • Single-serve boxes of ready-to-eat healthy cereal
  • Chocolate covered raisins
  • Fig cookies
  • Mini boxes of raisins
  • Individual juice drinks (100% juice)
  • Snack pack pudding
  • Applesauce
  • Single-serve packets of low-fat microwave popcorn

 

And always keep in mind non-food items for giveaway too…  

  • Stickers or temporary tattoos
  • Small toys such as yo-yos, bubbles or glow sticks
  • Bracelets or slap wristbands
  • Pencils, erasers, crayons, markers or bookmarks
  • Halloween related goodies such as plastic spider rings, false teeth or funny glasses

Items to encourage activity such as bouncy balls, jump ropes, and sidewalk chalk for hopscotch

post-author

Seattle Sutton, BSN, RN

She made healthy eating her mission in life long before anyone else did, in hopes of helping her own obese father. A registered nurse by training and entrepreneur at heart, she lives, eats and breathes everything about healthy eating and helping to improve people’s eating habits and overall health. She enjoys never having to bother with grocery shopping, cooking and counting calories. Her favorite SSHE meal, although it’s hard to pick just one, is the Potato Gnocchi with Basil Pesto Sauce.

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