Guest Author - Carolann Stefanco
It is not just on Halloween that we consume sugars. On a daily basis, the majority of the population eats some form of sugar, whether it be fructose, lactose or sucrose, maltose, maple syrup, corn syrup or brown sugar. All of these can become problematic to your health.
Sugar can change your healthy body by feeding cancer cells, triggering weight gain, and promoting premature aging. It can create metabolic imbalances, increase cholesterol, weaken eye sight, cause food allergies, contribute to diabetes and even osteoporosis.
White sugar is physically addictive and humans have had a strong desire for sweets as far back as 327 B.C. when raw sugar was used in India. But you don't have to give up your sweetness of sugar, just replace it with better alternatives, such as stevia and xylitol, that are safe and natural.
In order to make your Halloween healthier you can enjoy and hand out the following to trick or treaters: dried fruit, trail mix, baked pretzels, nuts and seeds, raisins, sugar free gum, fig cookies, low sugar cereal bars and low fat popcorn. Some children may have food allergies to nuts, so it might be best to ask first before handing out a packet of peanuts.
You may want to consider handing out non-edible treats to trick or treaters such as stickers, spider rings, bubbles and vampire teeth. If your child receives a lot of sugary candy you can always try to recycle it by giving it away at work or donating it to charities or using it for other events.
If you are considering a Halloween party for children, serve healthier snacks and natural drinks for them to enjoy. Parents will be appreciative knowing that their youngsters will not be consuming tons of sugary sweets and coming home with a Halloween tummy ache!
At Halloween parties a fun game to play, that is also nutritious, is bobbing for organic apples. Children can also have a fun time creating a vegetable pizza, making pumpkin cookies or pumpkin bread, and baking pumpkin seeds or apple pie. Craft activities can be quite fun for children, such as decorating Halloween masks for their friends, making ghosts out of old fabrics stuffed with cotton balls, or the traditional carving of pumpkins as an activity supervised by adults with safe implements.
By getting creative and finding healthier alternatives, Halloween can be a very nutritious as well as enjoyable time for adults and children.