Children's Hospital Colorado

What To Do With Halloween Candy

A close-up of a Halloween candy bowl that looks like an orange jack-o-lantern, being held by a kid in a skeleton costume.

How to prevent sugar overload

On Halloween, children often bring home hoards of candy, while parents hope it’s gone before the kids eat their weight in chocolate. To keep children (and yourself) from over-consuming unhealthy treats, try these tips from the nutrition experts at Children’s Colorado.

  1. Eat a healthy dinner before trick-or-treating. This will keep children from eating a dinner of candy.
  2. Trick-or-treat earlier in the evening. This limits the amount of time children have to collect candy. It also allows parents and children to come home earlier to hand out excess candy to trick-or-treaters.
  3. Emphasize that candy is a “sometimes” food. When you get home, have your children select their favorite candies that they can eat in moderation on designated "treat" nights (but do not make this a tradition that lasts until the candy runs out).
  4. Keep candy or treats off the counter. This encourages overeating and eating candy when you're not hungry (even at work).
  5. Make sure your children brush their teeth after eating candy.
  6. Set up a fun game or craft activity immediately after trick-or-treating. This detracts attention from candy and eating.

What to do with excess candy

  1. Give it to trick-or-treaters when you get home.
  2. Refrain from bringing it to work where you and your colleagues will be tempted to over-consume.
  3. Donate to U.S. troops.

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