Health & Fitness

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

Getty Author: Elle Canada Credits: Getty

Health & Fitness

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

 

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10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween

We get it, Halloween takes you back to the good old days when nothing came between you and a pillowcase brimming with candy that you ate until passed out from a sugar crash. But our metabolisms aren’t like they used to. We show you how to get through this sugary evening and its aftermath without overindulging.   READ MORE: Is there an exercise pill in our future?

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Out of sight, out of mind

Put the candy in the cupboard until the trick-or-treaters are just about to show up. “Environmental stimuli are triggers for many people when it comes to eating candy and unhealthy foods. You see it, you crave it,” says Diana Steele, registered dietitian and owner of Vancouver’s Eating for Energy Nutrition Counselling.   READ MORE: Another reason to quit drinking diet pop right now

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Don’t buy candy until you need it

This is one time in your life when a last-minute scramble – i.e. to the grocery store to pick up candy – will actually pay off. “Although Halloween candy shows up in stores several weeks before the date, buy it as close to the 31st as possible. If you buy it and bring it into your house, odds are, you will eat it,” says Coleen Nolan registered dietitian at inner peas Nutrition & Lifestyle Counselling in Halifax. Still tempted? She recommends giving out stickers, pens and other knick-knacks to trick-or-treaters instead. And if you want to really splash out, get the local kiddies some gift cards. Just be sure to tell me your address so I can trick or treat on your street.   READ MORE: 5 Canadian yoga retreats to try now

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Fill yourself up with a healthy meal first

“People tend to eat candy when it is there is because they are hungry,” says Steele. “If you have gone for more than three or four hours since your last meal or snack your blood sugars will have dropped and your brain knows that candy is a quick fix. Eat regularly and you will be better armed to fight the temptation.”   READ MORE: Wear this colour to feel more confident

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Delay giving in

"Battle the craving," says Steele. Tell yourself you can have that Snickers, but you have to wait 30 minutes. Repeat every time you feel the urge to snack. “The more often you delay eating the candy instead of responding immediately to a craving…the less intense the cravings become,” she says. That’s because your brain learns that you won’t give in right away. In dietitian speak, this is called “riding the urge curve.”   READ MORE: Is this the new thigh gap?

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Eat it if you really want it

Steele refers to this as the pleasure maximization principle – it sounds naughty, but bear with me. If you are going to eat that chocolate bar (or two or three), make sure you sit down, savour it and pick a treat that you really love. That means avoiding the leftover Smarties packages that none of the neighbourhood kids wanted.   READ MORE: Eating fat might not be as bad as you thought

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Alcohol is just as bad for you as chocolate

For us big kids, Halloween equals house party or hitting the club. Remember alcoholic drinks pack a lot of calories. Three coolers, for example, will run you about 700 calories, says Nolan. (That's scarier than The Exorcist.) Even worse, booze affects the hormone and opioid systems that regulate appetite and makes you hungrier – hence the post-bar poutine run. A rule of thumb: the less sugar in your drinks, the better. Opt for drinks such as light beer, wine spritzer or hard liquor shot with a low-calorie mixer such as club soda or a splash of cranberry juice. Alternate every drink with a glass of water.   READ MORE: The truth about e-cigarettes you don't want to hear

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Avoid snacking peer pressure

If your squad is complaining about their boyfriends over mini-chocolate bars before heading to the bar in your matching Mean Girls costumes, gripe away, but stay away from the snacks. “Sometimes, we eat due to peer pressure, to avoid offending a friend or relative or out of a need to feel part of a group,” says Nolan. Don’t. They’ll still love you.   READ MORE: 5 tips to conquer any food craving

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy

How to survive Halloween: Don’t beat yourself up if you did indulge

Get out there for an extra run or workout. And remember, it’s only one day. “If you splurge, enjoy it. The next day is a new day. If we are living the healthiest lifestyle we can enjoy on a daily basis, we will achieve our best health in the long run,” says Nolan.   READ MORE: 6 steps to getting a better sleep

By: Carli Whitwell Source: Getty Credits: ELLE Canada
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Health & Fitness

10 rules for surviving Halloween without eating all the candy