During the month of October I love to see the community come together to celebrate. The creativity behind the decorations and the costumes people come up with is so much fun and exciting to see. However, as much as I do believe in balance, it's hard to watch so many kids load up on as much candy as they can fill their bags with.
There is a growing concern about the amount of sugar and other unhealthy ingredients in packaged treats on the market today and how it is connected to behavioural and health disorders. Many of us have had a hard time giving up sugar because the cravings seem impossible to deal with and we're often on the lookout for some healthy sweet alternatives.
So what are some tricks to cure a sweet tooth without being deprived of all the fun of Halloween? Make some festive healthy but naturally sweet alternatives!
Zombie Mouths - Take 2 slices of green or red apple, put a layer of almond butter between the two pieces, and place 4 to 5 macadamia nuts within the almond butter. Squish the two apple slices together slightly to create a zombie mouth. You can also use almond slices instead of macadamia nuts to create a broken tooth look.
Ghost Pops - Take half a banana and roll it in unsweetened shredded coconut. Press 2 raisins or raw cacao nibs onto the banana as eyes. Insert a popsicle stick into the banana and place in the freezer.
Orange Pumpkins - Cut up a stalk of celery and place one piece into the top of small mandarin oranges or tangerines.
Sweet Potato Pumpkin Chips - Preheat oven to 400. Peel a large sweet potato and cut into thin slices. Use a sharp knife to cut out shapes to resemble jack'o'lanterns. Toss the sweet potato slices in 2 tsp of coconut oil, 1 tsp of cinnamon, and a pinch of salt until all pieces are coated. Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes until edges are lightly browned, flipping halfway.
These festive treats are full of natural fruit sugars and balanced with healthy protein and fats to minimize spikes in blood sugar that lead to sugar highs and crashes.
It's also helpful to add in extra probiotics and fermented foods at this time to support the gut with friendly bacteria to fight pathogenic bacteria that can overgrow and decrease immune function when fed excess sugar. Foods rich in fiber also help slow the absorption and regulate blood sugar.
Now I'd love to hear from you. What are you doing to create a healthier Halloween this season? Share and let me know!