I’ve only enjoyed dressing up for Halloween a few times in my life but I’ve always loved the candy! In fact, the overabundance of candy was Halloween’s only redeeming quality as far as I was concerned. It was always an “acceptable” excuse to indulge in candy that was off-limits the rest of the year. So, like most people, I engaged in Halloween bingeing…even on candy I didn’t like.
But, what if we didn’t have to binge on candy on Halloween? What if we could eat our favorite candy in celebration of Halloween and not feel guilty about it? You absolutely can and here’s how:
- Give yourself permission to eat candy not only during Halloween but during the rest of the year too. Once the “off limits” label is taken off candy, it loses its allure. When it sheds its allure, you will miraculously lose the urge to binge on it. I know, it seems impossible but, after some practice, you’ll notice that you won’t crave it as much and can leave it in the cupboard.
- Yay, we can have candy! Not so fast…slow down and eat the candy mindfully. Pick out only your very favorites, sit down with 3 pieces, take 5 deep breathes, slowly peel off the wrapper, savor its scent and then eat it bite by bite allowing your taste buds to register the flavor. You’ll be amazed that 3 pieces will be more than enough to satiate your craving and you may even eat less than 3.
- Once you have eaten your delicious candy mindfully, check in with how your body feels. Did you enjoy the candy as much as you thought you would? Did it agree with your stomach? Could you do without it? Did it taste funny because you’ve been eating “clean” and the candy you chose wasn’t “clean”? Identifying how your body feels is important in understanding if you received pleasure from the candy itself or because it’s been declared off limits. The next time you reach for the candy, remember how you answered. You may be surprised that you don’t want the candy after all.
- Buy higher quality candy. Whole Foods Market has a great selection of chocolate and other goodies that don’t contain high fructose corn syrup or other ingredients that perpetuate sugar cravings. I LOVE the Justin’s brand dark chocolate peanut butter cups and you can get them in individually wrapped packages à la Halloween style. Although a bit more expensive than traditional candy, it’s healthier and more satisfying because you usually have to eat less to become satiated.
Dealing with the overindulgence on candy is the easy part. Deciding on the Halloween costume is much harder so good luck and….Happy Halloween!