Happy (healthy) Halloween!

I love Halloween. I LOVE chocolate. And I HATE guilt.

Ok, this has nothing to do with chocolate, but this is one of my favorite Halloween costumes (I’m on the left)

For those of us trying to watch what we eat (or who have various issues with sugar) Halloween is just the beginning of the season of temptation and over-indulgence. I have very fond memories of trick-or-treating as a child with a pillow case, then sitting with friends exchanging candy from our piles of treasure. 

NOW I know that if I were to enjoy candy like I did back in the day, I would spend the next 2-3 days paying for it in mood swings (and my husband would be less than thrilled with me). And since the candy seems to never go away, this drama would be played out for a while. So what is a chocolate-loving person to do?

Don’t say no. Seriously.

Many of us have a tendency to react to restriction, so if you say, “NO CANDY WHATSOEVER” you might end up on a binge you’ll regret. How about, “I’m going to enjoy 2 pieces of my favorite candy bar.” A few tips to make this easier:

  • Try to buy what you need and not too much. You don’t want too many leftovers.
  • If you DO have leftovers, try to give them away or put them in the freezer (harder to access = eating less).
  • Get the cheap candy for the trick-or-treaters and buy one or two really nice pieces for yourself.
  • When you eat sweets, have it with your meal. If you ingest sugar at the same time (or close) as protein and fat, you will slow the absorption of sugar into the blood stream (having less of a negative impact on your health – but the calories still count!!).
  • Buy candy you don’t like. If the only stuff you have to give away is stuff you don’t like, you’re not going to eat it!

Today I picked up a real food peanut butter cup. What is a real food peanut butter cup you ask? It’s a peanut butter cup made WITHOUT GMOs, weird preservatives or other funky stuff. It’s a peanut butter cup that I could make at home if I was crazy enough to make a whole batch of deliciousness (which I would never do unless there was a party coming up BECAUSE I WOULD EAT IT ALL!!!). So, I can feel really comfortable saying no to all of the regular candy bars that will cross my path this week because I have something better at home.

Here’s what sugar does to the body.

Wonder how much sugar is actually in those Halloween treats? Wonder no more.

If you’re good at saying no, and this stuff doesn’t tempt you, AWESOME! I’m kinda jealous. But for me, I don’t want to start grabbing a piece here, a piece there, until I realize I’ve been eating sugar all week! Or I pick up a regular candy bar and feel guilty for eating something that I know is totally processed junk (then on top of it I get the sugar swings). Or, I eat it, go all crazy for a few days, then feel guilty for not taking care of myself. NO MORE GUILT!!!

I would love to see Halloween get rid of the candy (I will be giving out mini Play-Dough this year along side some usual items). But this is not going to happen in the near future, so until then, I will do my best to give out not-totally-horrible-for-you goodies and I will set myself up to avoid those binges.

Since we all have a favorite….mine is peanut butter cups (or really anything with peanut butter in it).

What’s yours and how do you avoid the Halloween binge?

 

 

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