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With spooky season approaching, it’s easy to get tricked into indulging in too many treats. Here’s how you can enjoy the seasonal festivities without neglecting your health and wellness.
1. Embrace the autumn harvest
Instead of filling up on junk food, soda and sweets, incorporate some nutritious options into your diet. “Fruits and vegetables provide our bodies with essential vitamins and minerals,” said Joshua George, R.D., Clinical Nutrition and Patient Services manager at Inspira Health. “Autumn’s harvest offers an abundance of tasty options.” Think butternut squash, beets, brussels sprouts, kale, apples, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and carrots—all known for their nutritional value and fresh flavor.
2. Wait until the last minute to buy candy
It’s tempting to stock up on Halloween candy as soon as we see it in stores, but keeping candy in your house all season makes you more likely to sneak a piece or two when a craving strikes. As we all know, a few pieces of candy a day can add up quickly. Instead, hold off on buying candy until the day before or the day of trick-or-treating. Doing so removes the temptation to overdo it in the days and weeks leading up to the holiday.
3. Get your heart rate up
This Halloween season, carve out some time for physical activity with your family. “Take advantage of the cooler temperatures and go for a walk or bike ride around your neighborhood,” said George. “Engaging in regular physical activity can help control your weight, improve your mental health and minimize your risk of heart disease and some types of cancer.”
4. Eat a balanced meal before trick-or-treating
“Having a healthy, well-rounded meal right before trick-or-treating can reduce the temptation to fill up on sweets and other foods with no nutritional value,” said George. “Incorporating protein, carbohydrates, vegetables and healthy fats into your meal can help ensure you and your family stay full for longer periods and avoid going overboard on the candy.”
5. Hand out non-edible items to trick-or-treaters
Even though candy is essential to Halloween, focus on the fun. Switch it up this year by offering non-edible items to your trick-or-treaters. Some fun, kid-friendly options include spider rings, glow sticks, bouncy balls, vampire teeth, temporary tattoos, stickers, bubbles, decorative pencils, slime and friendship bracelets.
6. Handle excess candy responsibly
Enjoy your Halloween candy, but don’t eat it mindlessly. Set guidelines for your family around how much candy they can enjoy when trick-or-treating is over, and save the rest for later. Donate your excess candy to a children’s hospital or homeless shelter to help spread the holiday joy.
Inspira Health is a high reliability organization (HRO), which means safety is the top priority for patients and staff. To make an appointment, call 1-800-INSPIRA.