Knowing what to do with sweets, especially around Halloween, can be so anxiety-inducing for parents. We’re here to help once and for all! And check out some candy options we’ve rounded up without artificial dyes.
Written by: Jessica Diamond, MPH, RDN
Knowing what to do with sweets, especially around Halloween, can be so anxiety-inducing for parents. You might be thinking, “What will I do with all this candy in the house?” or “My kid is already asking how much Halloween candy they can eat!” Or maybe you’ve found that, every time you’ve tried to manage their candy intake in the past, they only get more obsessed with it.
What if we told you that your child will have a healthier relationship with sweets if you’re not vigilant about their Halloween candy intake? We know that a parent’s desire to control candy intake comes from a good place: we all want our kids to eat healthy foods! But putting restrictions around foods, especially sweets, actually has the opposite effect.
It may be hard to believe, but it’s true: studies show that, when we try to control desserts, we put those foods on a pedestal, which makes it more likely that our kids will obsess over them and crave them. In other words, restrictions around sweets, like Halloween candy, make those foods seem extra special, so our kids will eat more of those foods (and probably too much!) whenever they get the chance.
With this in mind, we work hard to #makeallfoodsfit in our homes – and yes, that includes dessert! We allow our kids to have regular access to sweets in a structured way, so that they learn to listen to their body’s cues, self-manage their intake, and ultimately eat sweets in proportion to other, more nutrient-dense foods. We live in a world surrounded by dessert, and children who have regular access to sweets end up eating them in moderation.
So, instead of dreading Halloween this year and feeling all that pressure to control your kid’s candy intake, look at the holiday as an opportunity for your kid to build their intuition around sweets. Here’s our simple guide to making Halloween stress-free:
Hungry for more? Tune into our episode all about sweets and treats, How to not lose your mind over Halloween candy, where we talk about how you can make all foods fit, especially at Halloween and around the holidays. And share with us how you’re handling Halloween candy differently this year by using the hashtag #makeallfoodsfit and tagging @meaningfullliving on social media. Have a Happy Halloween!
And…if you’re on the hunt for some new candy options without artificial dyes, high-fructose corn syrup, or any other additives…here’s our top 5 picks.