Trick or Treat: Let kids enjoy the fruits of their labor, says dietitian
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014
MANHATTAN — It's OK to let your kids indulge in the candy they get from trick-or-treating, says a Kansas State University registered dietitian.
"Nothing should ever be completely foreign and off limits because then it becomes something that kids really crave. I think if we make candy something that's just off limits, kids will go overboard," said Sandy Procter, assistant professor and extension specialist in the human nutrition department in the university's College of Human Ecology.
Procter says instead of forbidding trick-or-treating, set limits and guidelines before donning costumes so kids can enjoy the fruits of their labor without overdoing it. She suggests:
• Eating dinner before trick-or-treating.
• Setting a time limit or house limit to avoid getting too much candy.
• Bringing a treat bag of healthy treats for kids to munch on while trick-or-treating
Procter says it's a must to check your child's bag of candy before letting him or her eat it any of it to make sure it is properly wrapped and sealed.
Controlling the situation ahead of time will make Halloween a safe and enjoyable holiday, she said.
"I think it's easy to eat too much of any food, but I come from the school of dietetics that says all food can fit," Procter said. "A little candy should fit in an otherwise healthful diet."
If you don’t want to pass out candy to trick-or-treaters, Procter says try alternatives like bags of pretzels or other healthy snacks.