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October: Halloween Safety/Caloric Intake

Dr. Rheinchard Reyes - Tuesday, October 23, 2018 | Comments (0)
The ancient tradition that is Halloween is right around the corner which means it’s highly likely you’ll encounter witches, ghosts, vampires, and superheroes. It also means you’re bound to find candy at every corner- at home, the office, and even your doctor’s office. Safety is a major concern for many, especially parents. Although you might be mindful of yours and your children’s daily food intake, that may go out the window during this time of year. A “fun size” piece of candy here and there is no big deal and shouldn’t have a noticeable impact on your physical health or appearance but the calories can easily and quickly creep up on you. Learn about what to be aware of and what safety measures you can take during spooky season, below.

Trick-or-Treating

In 2017, it was estimated that over 41 million trick-or-treaters between the ages of 5 and 14 would hit the streets in search for sweets and other goodies. Keeping children safe during this time is a priority for parents. The following recommendations can help keep the nightmares at bay: Remind your children to not take or consume any candy or treat given to them by a stranger Go through the candy and look for any opened wrappers or any signs of damage Remove any pieces that might be a choking hazard for smaller children Make sure your children eat a full meal before beginning treat-or-treating activities

Hidden Calories

Halloween parties can be fun and filled with all kinds of candies, snacks, desserts, and drinks you probably wouldn’t typically consume. These come with all kinds of hidden ingredients that translate to calories. To get an idea of the amount of calories you could potentially consume from candy alone, take a look at the following list of popular Halloween candy and their corresponding calories: 
  • Almond Joy fun size: 80 calories 
  • Candy corn: 140 calories (19 pieces) 
  • Hershey’s fun size: 77 calories 
  • Kit-Kat fun size: 70 calories 
  • M&Ms fun size: 73 calories 
  • Milky Way fun size: 80 calories 
  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup: 105 calories (per cup) 

Consider that if you attend a party you will encounter many other calorie traps in things like punch, cake, cookies, and other sweet treats. By simply being more mindful at the time of unwrapping a piece of candy or filling your plate with snacks, you can prevent hundreds of empty calories and the resulting weight gain. 
 
Halloween can be a fun time for many and it can be also be a healthy one, as well. Enjoying a candy here and there is no big deal but remember that those little calories can really sneak up. Opting to replace punch or cake with a more healthy option can make a difference in keeping the balance in your usual diet. For more information about how to prevent hidden calories during this season and throughout the year, consult with your healthcare provider. 

Sources:
https://www.foodsafety.gov/blog/halloween_safety.html 
https://www.census.gov/newsroom/facts-for-features/2018/halloween.html

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