Halloween is typically considered the holiday that rings in a season of gluttony and indulgence. Come October 31, we are faced with celebration after celebration after celebration–it’s enough to make you lose your head.
You’d think spooky Halloween confections would be for kids only, but adult parties make a night of trick or treating look like a healthy evening walk around the neighborhood. Adult parties typically revolve around ghoulish temptations like candy, booze and general bacchanal pleasures. They’re good for the spirit, but not so good for the bod. Of course, there are ways to indulge on traditional confections without the haunting consequences.
Here are a few ways to healthfully consume candy this Halloween:
Take advantage of fun size options: Those mini candy bars and itty bitty bags of candy do the work for you. If you’re down to eat whatever is in a Three Musketeers or sack of Skittles, eat a miniature version. They’ve already done the portion control for you.
Read labels: Find out which candy has ingredients you find objectionable, serving size and find out how many calories are in different types of candy. That way you can compare and weigh your options. Did you know you can have five mini Kit Kat bars at 12 fewer calories than 35 pieces of Candy Corn?
Choose “healthy” candy: Recently, I tried Unreal Unjunked candy and though not the most dietetic of sweets, they are “better for you” because they leave out ookie chemicals. I particularly enjoyed the muted colors of their M&M-like candy shell covered chocolates. The muddy colors gave me a 70s vibe that I could really get down with. Unreal candy totally satisfied my sweet tooth and gave me smug bragging rights due to their more natural ingredients.
Submit to the dark side: As a general rule, dark chocolate is better for you. It typically has less dairy, less sugar and more antioxidants. Unfortunately for me, I prefer milk chocolate. I keep hoping that one day I’ll be partial to the dark stuff because it’s more sophisticated and adult.
Get nutty: If a confection has nuts in it, you can pretend you’re eating something sort of healthy because of uhh protein. The space the nuts take up is space that more sugar and chemicals would take up in their absence.
Keep in mind that “sugar-free” does not mean healthy: Low carb and sugar free options might have more fat and higher calorie counts than their full sugar counterparts, they also are probably chock full of some mad scientist’s chemicals.
Divvy up the loot: Since you’re already reading labels, you know what numbers to plug in to simple calculations. Split bags of candy into portions you find adequate and you can indulge without spoiling your diet or whatever.
Let me know if you have any healthy Halloween recommendations, Halloweiners.