Did you know there is an association called the National Confectioners Association?
Check out their webiste: alwaysatreat.com
How happy would you be if you had a job at the National Confections Association? This organization represents all of America’s Leading Chocolate and Candy Companies.
Let’s face it. Whether we like to admit or not, we all enjoy a sweet here and there. I know of many individuals who don’t think a meal is complete until they’ve had something sweet.
Given that today is Halloween, let’s talk about how to navigate through the abundance of candy and/or treats that may enter the house. Everyone says the candy is for kids but adults benefit too. 🙂
Step 1: Devise a Plan
a) We talk about portion control all the time but when it comes to trick or treating, it is sometimes not enforced. Children love the concept of sugar, candy and treats. The more they are able to get, the happier they are. As parents, it is your role to set limits. If it means buying smaller pumpkin trick or treat pails, do it. As a role model figure, you have set the limit but still given your children the freedom to make choices (i.e. go to the different houses to get candy and treats).
b) Children often understand candy are treats. How often do you allow your children to have treats in a week? Negotiate how often the child and/or children are allowed to have candy as their treat.
What if you have no children and have lots of leftover candy which could not be handed out? What happens if your child brings back more than anticipated treats into the house? Here are some tips:
a) Would you consider freezing your treats? Going with the philosophy of “Out of sight, out of mind”, I find many clients have success with this method.
b) Put all treats on a shelf out of your sight line. Further reinforcing the “out of sight, out of mind” philosophy, this method has a very good success rate as well.
Step 2: Understand what a portion of candy is
What is the suggested portion for candy?
I have had many individuals who say they eat have a square of chocolate every single day. As part of a healthy lifestyle, you can incorporate 100 calories per day from confectionery products.
Step 3: Always make sure you eat before you enjoy your treat.
Referring back to the suggested portion size for candy, it is 100 kcals per day. I don’t have an issue with individuals having a square of chocolate every day IF it meant that it was enjoyed after a well balanced snack and/or meal. It becomes an issue when individuals often reach for the treat out of boredom and/or hunger due to the lack of balanced snack or meal because that’s where 1 square of chocolate often does not cut it. It will lead to an overconsumption of sweets.
Food For Thought: Do You Find Yourself Often Craving Sweets? Think about why you are craving sweets. Is it because you are hungry and don’t have a well balanced snack on hand (you’ve left too long of a time gap in between meals)? Is it because you’re bored? Are you reaching for sweets in response to an emotion (i.e. anger or sadness)? I will write about mindful eating in a future post but individuals often demonize sweets but the truth is a healthy lifestyle can incorporate sweets. A 100 calories can be from confectionary treats per day.
If mindfulness is not a skill you have mastered yet, you could always jazz up a clementine. Grab a Sharpie and get artsy! 🙂