What's the most frightening thing about Halloween? The SUGAR.
It's absolutely everywhere & seems unavoidable this time of year. Luckily there are a few things we can do to become Healthy Holiday Advocates!
1. eat before the party.
This can be the most effective holiday tool to have in your arsenal! Whether it be the minimal selection of nourishing foods, lack of knowledge about ingredients used, or weird looks as you grab the carrots instead of the cupcakes, holiday parties are a tough place to be healthy. Try to eat a satisfying meal before you go & avoid the trouble!
p.s. If you are invited to a potluck, bring something nourishing for yourself & others.
2. hand out something other than candy.
WHAT?! I know, right! The first time I considered handing out something other than candy it almost felt like I was planning on breaking the law.
The way I see it, if I want people to eat & live in a way that supports the healthiest version of them, I sure as heck better do everything I can to help them get there!
It's a small gesture, but trading out a piece of candy for a little toy or fun glow stick is better than nothin'. Who knows, if enough of us do it maybe we can start a revolution!
- Glow Stick Bracelets/Necklaces
- Spider Rings
- Halloween Themed Pens/Pencils
What Halloween treat can you pass out this year? Leave ideas in the comments below!
3. make the most of the seasonal squash.
Eating with the seasons is awesome for our health...& so very fun around Halloween. Each season brings us foods that are filled with nutrients that can support us through that particular time of year. The Fall season offers us vitamin & mineral dense squash that are hearty, warm, & filling!
Why is Halloween particularly awesome? Not only do we have scrumptious acorn, butternut, & spaghetti squash, but PUMPKIN as well. This year I say ditch the can & get your knife out...it's time to roast a pumpkin! You can use the pumpkin meat to make soups, smoothies, & almond meal pumpkin bars (to name a few things), & the seeds are just a really tasty bonus.
4. educate the kids.
It might be tough for kids to understand why you'll be phasing out the "sweet" part of Halloween. That being said, teaching them about why you are making a change is the key to success.
You can start by explaining the negative effects of sugar on their bodies (like stress to the liver & leaching minerals from their bones).
You can also turn it into a learning experience by doing a family research project on why Halloween is celebrated. Teaching them about the history can help to shift the focus away from the candy & back onto the reason for season!
Make it fun by getting them involved in the planning; let them chose other ways to celebrate or which toys to hand out at the door.
5. keep a natural treat on hand.
Lets be real here...we've spend years conditioning our bodies to expect sugar on Halloween. Even last year I found myself in knots trying to figure out how to stop craving the decadent pumpkin vanilla cake that we ate growing up.
If you are in the beginning phases of cutting out the sugar (or even years into it) you can be setting yourself up for failure if you aren't prepared. How can you fix that? FRUIT. Go a little crazy ;]. Cut up some chunks of watermelon, slice a green apple & drizzle over a bit of raw honey, or dig into a bag of frozen mango--my personal favorite! When you feel a sugar craving coming on as you pass out those Halloween treats, satiate it with something that will not only satisfy the sweet tooth but offer some nourishment as well.
In the mood for something more seasonal? Make some Pumpkin Butter! Roast a pumpkin (you can do a quick internet search for directions) scoop out the tasty pumpkin mash & add grass-fed butter, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, & a drop of raw honey to taste. Mix it all together & put it into a mason jar for storage. The Pumpkin Butter will last about 5 days in the fridge. It's like your own personal pumpkin pie!