Is a Healthy Halloween Realistic?
Being “good” on Halloween is so much easier when you’re not sitting in front of a basket full of your favorite candy... not to mention surrounded by a group of friends or coworkers who are constantly indulging in the sweets.
Personally, I am extremely committed to my nutrition plan – it’s truly a form of medicine for me – but I also find that if I’m too strict, especially around holidays and special occasions, it sets me back. If nothing else, I feel so separated from the community of people around me. So, this Halloween, I’m setting out on a quest to make it realistically healthy and delicious! Want to join me?
First, it’s important to decide which side of the fence you sit on when it comes to food. Are you an all or nothing person? If you have one bite of something, you want it all? Or, are you a moderation person? The idea of eliminating a food creates an instant craving for the food but if you’re allowed a weekly dessert, then you’re good.
As a nutrition coach, I discovered how distinct these two groups are and the importance of recognizing your food “personality” to set you up for success. While I have a hard line against my food restrictions, I do get very creative in discovering allergy-friendly alternatives. This to me is the most helpful strategy. If I know that I’m going to be in an environment with temping food, I will intentionally pick up some allergy-friendly treats for myself in advance. This way I get to feel part of the social event, but I’m not compromising my commitment to my health.
My favorite indulgent treats
My favorites include:
- Wholesome DelishFish are hands-down my absolute favorite yummy candies. Thankfully, most of the grocery stores around me sell them so they’re easy to pick up for a special occasion.
- Enjoy Life Foods sells amazing soft batch snickerdoodle cookies that are great when I want a bakery-type treat.
- SoDelicious Coconut Milk Ice Cream is delightful. Because it’s coconut-based, it’s rich and creamy so it resembles regular milk ice cream most to me.
And of course, there are lots of great allergy-friendly recipes online that you can make and/or a lot of allergy-friendly bakeries that are popping up. Health food stores like Whole Foods are even increasing their allergy-friendly selections too.
Planning my indulgences
Okay, so we have a selection of healthy treat options that we can enjoy. (These are my favorites. What are yours? Post in the comments below!) The next step for me is to set expectations or boundaries around my indulgence, otherwise it can be a slippery slope all the way through Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year.
When will I be most tempted to indulge? It’s rarely when I’m at home by myself. It has more to do with the food being tied to a social event. So, maybe I’ll give myself one event or maybe one day to indulge.
In other cases, I may decide that I’m going to get one bag of the gummy fish or box of cookies, for example, and I have to make them stretch a week. That’ may not be a problem for some people, but those cookies in particular are so pop-able... well let’s just say I can easily go over the serving size if I’m not intentional with it. Last but not least, I do my absolute best to eat especially well during mealtimes around the holidays like Halloween. This gives me some reassurance that I’m fueling my body well on a daily basis.
This is my path to enjoying a deliciously healthy Halloween, we’ll see how it goes!
Have you ever experienced any of the following symptoms?