8 Tips for a Healthier Halloween

October 26, 2017


The average child eats 7,000 calories and 3 whole cups of sugar every Halloween. Consider a few of these fun and easy alternatives!"

Halloween is one of our favorite times of year here at the Y — that’s why we always celebrate at our centers! But did you know the average child eats 7,000 calories of candy over the course of Halloween…the same as 13 cheeseburgers? That’s more than 3 whole cups of sugar!

To avoid gaining weight and overtaxing your digestive system this weekend, here are a few tips from the American Heart Association on how to have a healthier Halloween.

  1. Eat a healthy meal right before trick-or-treating. Children (and adults) with a full stomach are less likely to binge on candy.

  2. Stick to one piece of candy per house. If your kids need an explanation, tell them they’ll be able to visit more houses this way!

  3. Inspect everything before eating. Check expiration dates, allergens, and make sure nothing looks moldy or unusual.

  4. Make your Halloween party active. Don’t just sit around eating candy. Dance to the Monster Mash! Race to see who can hit the most houses the fastest!

  5. Consider handing out one treat per child at your door. If you’re handing out a variety of treats, ask children which one they prefer.

  6. Consider alternatives to candy. It doesn’t have to be boring. Give out clementines, blood oranges, popcorn, pumpkin seeds, or non-food items like stickers, stamps, glow sticks, crayons, and coloring books (just make sure to steer clear of choking hazards with small children).

  7. After Halloween, limit children to one or two pieces a day. After a week or so, the Halloween excitement will pass, and you can toss or donate the leftovers.

  8. “Buy back” candy from your kids. You can give them actual money, or tokens they can trade in for a fun activity. Check your dentist offices to see if they have a trade-in program of their own.

Don’t forget — if you join the Y between now and Halloween (October 31), we’ll completely waive your joiner fee! As a member, you’ll save 50% off most programs and classes.