Halloween can be a parent’s worst nightmare. Just picture those sugar-infused little bodies that ultimately crash at the end of a late night in the form of one doozy of a tantrum. Now that’s a scary Halloween.
How are you going to deal with your little gremlin this October 31st?
Here’s a plan for parents to survive Halloween and avoid the extreme sugar highs and lows!
Parents, meet with your kids before Halloween trick-or-treating or parties and work together to come up with a plan for how much candy they can have. Make them a part of the decision-making process so they feel they have some say.
What’s better, what’s worse? Look out for food dyes and colours as some kids react; allergies, behavioural issues or difficulty sleeping. If chocolate is their favourite, have some healthier choices (organic or dark choc) on hand to trade the ‘junk’ ones for and talk about why you are trading (and don’t forget to mention that in your family meeting).
Ever notice an increase in colds, flu or tummy aches post sugar rush? Sugar can depress the immune system for hours, and as there’s already a bunch of colds going around, bear that in mind before she tucks into her bag of loot. Boost the immune system with some probiotics for a week or so before, give some extra vitamin C (powders like ALKA C work well) to try to dodge the sickness that’s likely to follow October 31st. I always see a spike in issues with breastfed babies or toddlers, parents and kids: from colds and flus to digestive upsets, headaches and eczema flare-ups. Sugar can be to blame in most cases here (sorry!).
Help keep those blood sugar levels from peaking and crashing with a pre-trick-or-treating meal, which is a balance of carbs, veggies and protein. In fact, my lasagna recipe would be perfect! Check it below, recipe taken from Sprout Right Family Food. Take a water bottle with you en route with diluted juice, or a thermos with herbal tea as it’s usually chilly.
Egg-free, Gluten-free, Nut-free, Wheat-free
Makes 3 mini lasagnas or 1 large lasagna
TIP #1: Substitute organic ground turkey (dark meat) or grass-fed ground beef for the chicken for more nutrients and taste.
TIP #2: Canned tomato sauce may contain bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical known for its link to a number of health issues. Use jarred tomato sauce as a safer alternative.
This is a nutrient-rich meal containing antioxidants, calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and vitamin C. It’s also a balanced meal of protein, carbohydrate, and vegetables.
Ever thought about starting a new trend? It’s easier with the younger ones. Start a new tradition of giving out small toys to your trick or treaters. Talk about giving out healthier choices and alternatives. My faves include:
Is there something that your little princess or Spiderman has been coveting? Suggest a trade of their bag of loot (after some nibbling of course) for a longer lasting treat, or have the “Halloween Pumpkin” (cousin of the tooth fairy) come a day after Halloween and leave that special something in its place.
After years of working with very frustrated parents of varying degrees of picky eaters, I’ve been doing a deep dive into how to best help you. A group of parents shared their take on how their child is picky and it ranges in issues. The most common thing that I hear from parents is that they’re done with the struggle of fighting to get their kids something healthy and nutritious to eat – that they love! Some people still search recipe books (like my mine - Sprout Right Family Food), and now with the internet, they’re also spending hours searching online for different recipes to make their picky eaters try something a bit more nutritious than chicken fingers and French fries.
It’s that time again (I can hear the groan from here)! Time to think about packing school lunches every day for the next school year. I’m thinking that it might make you want to run and hide. How about something different this year? Take the pressure off and get your kids to make their own lunch. Yes, it is possible, I promise.