October 08, 2012

Staying focused on healthy living can be hard to do around October, especially for kids. With alarming childhood obesity rates on the rise, the Y is encouraging families to choose healthy and non-food treats as an alternative to sugary and unhealthy candy this season.

 

There are many healthy, yet fun, choices on the market to entice trick-or-treaters, and choosing to be healthy isn’t as hard as you think. We’ve pulled together some simple tricks to help you and your family successfully ‘treat’ this fall.

 

TRICK: eat a balanced meal beforehand

 

Before your children venture out in their costumes, make sure they eat a healthy meal before going trick-or-treating. Try the Incredible White Bean Pizza recipe below. It is fast and simple. With full stomachs, they won’t be so tempted to dig into their bag of goodies before they get back home. Ask your kids not to eat candy while they are out.

 

Incredible Bean Pizza

 

 

Ingredients: 1 can white beans, drained and rinsed 1 clove garlic, 2 tablespoons water, 1/2 teaspoon oregano, 1 pizza crust, Shredded Mozzarella cheese, Fresh diced tomatoes, Chopped basil

 

Directions:

  • Puree first five ingredients in a blender and spread mixture over the pizza crust.
  • Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese, fresh, diced tomatoes and chopped basil.
  • Bake in a 425 degree F oven until cheese is bubbly, about 10-12 minutes.

 

TRICK: avoid handing out treats altogether

 

There are several alternatives to passing out candy. Here are some suggestions that will make your neighbors both admire you and think twice about what they hand out next year:

 

  • Mini Toothbrushes
  • Halloween stickers
  • Rubber Balls
  • Party Favors
  • Colored Pencils
  • Raisins Packets
  • Key Chains

 

TRICK: make healthy choices

 

Not all candy is created equal. When you do indulge, try to pick out the lowest calorie and sugar options available. Check out our list for some suggestions:

 

  • 3 Musketeers Miniatures- 24 calories– WINNER!
  • Milky Way Mini- 28 calories
  • Snicker Mini- 42.5 calories
  • Two Twix Bars- 160 calories
  • Peanut Butter Pumpkin- 180 calories
  • Almond Joy/Mounds- 200 calories

 

Now, what to do with all the candy your kids bring home? Negotiate with your kids to “trade in” their candy for something that they’ve been wanting: a video game, a certain pair of jeans, a special dinner or just cash toward a higher priced gadget for which they want to save.

 

You can decide, based on your budget, what amount of bartering you are willing to do. Then, go through the treat bag together, letting them choose a set number of goodies to keep, after which they hand over the rest in exchange for their earned gift.

 

FALL FESTIVALS

 

At the Y, we make it our job to provide family time by bringing families together to have fun and grow together. That’s why we are providing not-so-scary fall festivals for the neighborhoods and communities we serve.

 

Come together with your community by participating in one of our fall festivals around Central Florida. Call your local Y for more information.

 

 

How will you stay healthy and celebrate fall?