SANTA MONICA, Calif., Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Parents can reduce candy consumption both before and after Halloween trick-or-treating, a U.S. food expert advises.
Phil Lempert, a food industry analyst, trend watcher and creator of the Web site supermarketguru.com, said Halloween is a time children like to stockpile sugary snacks, but parents need to limit the amount of candy kids collect and eat.
"A direct assault on Halloween overload would be to host a Halloween party for your kids complete with costumes and non-food prizes," Lempert said in a statement. "Serve up healthy party foods such as fresh vegetables and dips, baked chips and crackers and cheese and lean meats with whole grain breads for make-it-yourself sandwiches. You can also serve warm apple cider and plenty of water instead of soda and sports drinks."
Serve non-sugary treats such as nuts, raisins, 100 percent fruit leathers, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, or microwave popcorn, or give out Halloween-themed toys like rubbery bats and plastic eyeballs, Lempert said.
Other ways to limit candy consumption are:
-- Buy candy the day before Halloween. Besides saving money you won't be tempting your family to eat too much before trick-or-treating.
-- After Halloween, place two or three individually wrapped treats into a plain paper bag. Seal the bags and mark with a date over the next two weeks. Allow your child a treat bag marked for each day.
-- Give out temporary tattoos or stickers.