As parents are gearing up for Halloween, did you know that according to the National Retail Federation, Americans will spend $2.08 billion on candy this year. As if that isn’t alarming enough, recent reports estimate that on Halloween, the average American child will collect in the range of 3,500-7,000 calories of candy! That’s a lot of calories! Too much, and it’s something we don’t always think about.
Coined ‘America’s Green Nutritionist’, Kate Geagan, a frequent guest on morning news and talk shows, has helped millions of Americans fall in love with healthier, greener food choices that powerfully nourish their lives. An award-winning dietitian and the author of Go Green Get Lean: Trim Your Waistline with the Ultimate Low-Carbon Footprint Diet(Rodale), Kate helps families thrive in America’s food landscape. Kate, who is also a mother of two, offers the following strategies to help your family survive the Halloween junk food frenzy and suggests insight to nutritional swapping.
1. Spell out HALLOWEEN and hand out healthy snack packs such as Earth’s Best (Sesame Street) Organic Letter of the Day Vanilla Cookies. Candy won’t crowd out the healthy foods if kids are intrigued with the tasty alphabet treat.
2. Who doesn’t love a chocolate chip cookie? KIDSAFE Cookies are a perfect Halloween “treat” in its own little package.
3. Fill them up with healthy snacks first! Foods packed with fiber enriched whole grains like Elmo and Big Bird shapes of Crunchin’ Crackers and Grahams in flavors of cinnamon, chedder and veggie digest slowly and provide your child with a steady stream of energy.
4. DELICIOUS drinks that are made from real fruit juice purees – perfect treat to go with any snack.
5. Hand out non-food treats to the trick-or-treaters that come to your door – fake vampire teeth, glow sticks, pencils, stickers, temporary tattoos or other fun Halloween goodies. With all the candy they’re sure to get, kids will be thrilled with these non-food surprises.