THRIVE: Limiting Halloween Candy
Halloween candy can be a bit frightening for parents.
Mankato Clinic Registered Dietician Erin Gonzalez said parents should let kids eat what they want of their candy when they get home Halloween night.
"If they eat more than what they feel good with, and they end up with a tummy ache, it presents this learning opportunity to say 'oh does your stomach hurt? I wonder if we just ate more candy than what felt good.' and they can say 'oh maybe next time I won't eat as much,'" Gonzalez said.
After the first night, parents can then lay down some rules to cut back on the sweets.
One way can be by allowing kids to manage their own stash. Instead of taking the stash away from them completely, let kids have a certain number of pieces per day.
"In my home we do two," she said. "We can have two fun foods a day, and they get to choose when they have it. So they can have it with a meal, or they can have it with a snack, they get to choose it."
If kids are having a hard time managing it, then parents can take the stash back.
She also suggested trying to find creative ways to use the candy other than eating it, like using it for crafts, piñatas at birthdays, and even science experiments.
Finally, she says the best way to slow down candy consumption is to keep it out of sight, out of mind, and keep those healthy foods in reach.
"Keeping those healthy foods front and center, are still going to make them more likely to choose them, so keep those Halloween foods away until they decide that they want to choose it," she said.