Halloween is the first of a series of many sugar-focused “holidays” for many people. Often, the candy from this one evening will barely have a dent in it by the time Thanksgiving arrives with its pumpkin and pecan pies, and then candy canes and cookies come onto the scene. Here are 4 ways to keep yourself on track and prevent Halloween from snowballing you into months of poor eating.

1) Be THAT person – you know, the one that brings a healthy option to the party. Whether it’s your kid’s school Halloween party or an office fun lunch, bringing something that you KNOW you can (and should) eat will guarantee you a good option amongst all the junk food. How people feel about your offering shouldn’t be more important than your health. There are plenty of awesome veggie tray, fruit plate, and other fun healthy options that can be Halloween themed – just check out pintrest if you don’t believe me!

2) Trash the Candy, seriously. All that candy your kids bring home, it’s hard to resist. So make it easier; toss it. And commit to that plan. I know, those snickers bars are still in their wrapper…at midnight, wrapped candy in a trash can is still fair game, right? Take it to the outside trash can. Dump moldy leftovers on top of it, or raw chicken trimmings. Do whatever it takes to make that candy completely unappealing.

3) All or None – when I was a kid, we were allowed to eat as much candy as we wanted on Halloween, but then the rest was pitched. It made us sick to our stomachs that night, but prevented us from overindulging for days and weeks to come. Consider the same approach for your kids (and yourself!) to prevent candy from lingering around the house and tempting you day after day.

4) Avoid the Candy Aisle – this is good advise every shopping trip, but during Halloween and other sugar-filled holidays, it’s particularly good. Candy is on sale like crazy, making a normally tempting food even more desirable. So, instead of having to exercise extreme self-control when you see your favorite sweet treat at 50% off, just stay away from the offerings in the first place.

Have a great time trick or treating. And if you walk long enough, a mini candy bar or two won’t hurt. 🙂

Aubrey Phelps MS RDN LDN