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5 Tips for a Healthy HalloweenNutritionist Nicolette Pace Offers Tips to Keep Candy Cravings at Bay
With Halloween right around the corner, our candy cravings are already starting to kick in. In an attempt to stay in shape, we asked nutritionist Nicolette Pace for tips to keep our sweet tooth at bay, even as witching hour approaches. We need to look sexy in our costumes, after all!
WCIFTP: Halloween is quickly approaching! How can we celebrate without busting our diet?
Nicolette Pace: Celebrate the colors and flavors of the season. Halloween is a harvest festival so enjoy nature’s gifts! Look to roast sweet corn outdoors right in the husk and oven bake cubes of pumpkin with cinnamon and spices for a seasonal twist on sweet potato fries. Take a trip to a local farm to pick apples and pair with peanut butter or low fat cheese and a salad for a great lunch. Juicy grapes will quench your thirst and give your body a burst of antioxidants and plant chemicals to help your immune system stay strong.
WCIFTP: Are there any treats adults or children should totally avoid?
Nicolette Pace: Halloween treats that can pile on the calories from too much fat and sugar include desserts and candies that are portion size overloaded or jammed packed with lots of dense calorie ingredients like crunchies, nuts and syrups. Many appetizers have some really cute names but can be a real problem when the calories are in the four digits! Watch out for words like loaded, triple, jumbo, madness, macho, mucho – they mean trouble and serious calorie business.
WCIFTP: What are the safest treats with the least amount of calories?
Nicolette Pace: Fruits are nature’s candy. They contain fructose, the sweetest of all the natural sugars. Try dipping fruit into melted morsels for an amazing treat that doesn’t wipe your diet out. Try dipping apples, bananas, pineapple, strawberries into chocolate, caramel, toffee, peanut butter or vanilla flavors for a delicious and satisfying dessert with only a fraction of the calories of regular candy or other desserts. Rethink gelatin as a cool way to enjoy dessert with fun shapes or to fold in different fruits. It’s very filling without a calorie crisis!
WCIFTP: Can you give us any tips to ward off candy cravings?
Nicolette Pace: Keep a routine meal schedule and stay hydrated with water so you are not vulnerable to every flavor and smell that comes your way. This way you can see if your craving is really hunger or that you are just looking for a treat. Brushing your teeth or using mouthwash can distract you from your craving. Try to keep candy and other treats out of the house- out of sight, out of mind…but when cravings persist it is better to go for a “controlled indulgence.”A trip to the store to purchase a single serving will not only satisfy you but make sure your treat doesn’t come back to bite you.
WCIFTP: Can you recommend any candy alternatives for a guilt free indulgence?
Nicolette Pace: Think low fat chocolate milk a skeleton strengthener! For about 150 calories in a cup you will get great essential nutrients like protein, vitamin D, and minerals like calcium, potassium, magnesium and phosphorus. Enjoy it ice cold or hot for a delicious and nutritious chocolate fix. Warm up chocolate milk and top with mini marshmallows or low fat whipped topping. You can also use low fat chocolate milk to moisten many whole grain cereals for a great alternative to cookies!