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Posts Tagged ‘treats’

Avoiding the Perils of the Halloween Trail

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

When I was growing up, the main thing we worried about at Halloween was a non-packaged item that might be given to us by “freaks.”I do find it somewhat ironic that, of all things, we were warned about apples.Back then we weren’t concerned about genetically modified or organic varieties of apples.

No, then we were worried that the apple might have had a razor blade slipped inside.But these days, I do worry at Halloween.I worry about what’s beneath the wrappers of these so-called candy treats.They’re not quite as sweet as they might seem.


For many kids Halloween is a night of binge eating on candies loaded with sugar, high fructose corn syrup and artificial dyes and preservatives. For most parents I know, Halloween is a nightmare… binge eating, gluttony, poor behavior, upset stomachs and more resulting from too much junk.

So many parents don’t want to be perceived as a “Debbie Downer” so they go along – telling themselves that it’s just one night,  when in fact, the candy haul from Halloween can last well into the New Year.

I’m here to report that you don’t have to settle for candy packed with ingredients that are known to cause issues for kids. Say no to increased sugar cravings and behavioral troubles.

Did you know that regular candy is loaded with ingredients that can compromise your child’s immune system, destroy her concentration, cause hyperactivity and ADHD-like symptoms? Many other ingredients can cause gastro-intestinal issues and inflammation.

For example, artificial dyes are used in this country (while illegal elsewhere in the world) and have been linked to allergies, hyperactivity and more, according to a study published in Lancet.

It doesn’t have to be this way.Parents, take heed.This year your candy cheat sheet is here.  It’s your survival guide for this Halloween.

If you’re new to the revolution to “green” Halloween then you may want to start by simply buying a different candy or treat alternative.Start with something that’s free of artificial dyes and preservatives,  go non-GMO, or select an organic item.  Maybe discard the candy altogether and look for a treat alternative – something that isn’t technically a candy and has more nutrients than most candy.

Consider hosting a Green Halloween party to keep the kids in.Don’t sacrifice any of the fun but control the treats and give them better alternatives!

If your kids don’t want to give up trick-or-treating altogether, then do a ‘Switch Witch’ or ‘Candy Buy Back’ where you trade them their regular treats for candy that you buy that’s a healthier choice.

Be sure to provide a storage jar or box where they can see their candy and select an item a day, to be eaten after they’ve eaten a well-balanced meal.  Use this to teach portion control and responsible eating habits as well as to monitor the amount of candy consumed. This helps you deal with excessive tendencies before they turn problematic.

From here on, the fun is all yours!  Enjoy Halloween, without any unnecessary frights!

By Amy Ziff

This post previously appeared on

Amy Ziff is the Founder & Chief Capidealist at Veritey. When she’s not vetting products she’s usually found playing with her 3 kids, jumping on their favorite trampoline from Trampolinea, or finding ways to get fruit stains out of clothes naturally!

For more Hallowen thoughts  follow us on Facebook or Twitter @greenhalloween

Halloween Bulbs

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

Need another treat alternative?

How about onion bulbs or garlic cloves? Bonus, garlic keeps vampires at bay! Bulbs and cloves are small so they won’t take up to much room, but you can easily find them. Fall is also a good time to plant. You can even enjoy these treats in the future as part of a healthy and delicious family meal!

You can easily find bulbs in your local hardware or garden store. You can even try planting the bulbs in a glass vase so you little one can watch the growing process.

For more treat alternatives follow us on Facebook or Twitter @greenhalloween


The Goods on Goodie Bags

Friday, October 11th, 2013

The healthy treats and treasures you are giving away this Halloween deserve to look good! What better way to showcase how special they are than with some snazzy goodie bags? Perfect for your next party. Feel free to improvise with recycled materials.

For goodie ideas, check out our list of treat alternative, Candy Cheat Sheet, and twitter party tips.

Pumpkin Pouch Party Favors

  • Orange crepe paper
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Greenfloral tape
  • Treasures to wrap up

For each pouch, cut two 10-inch diameter circles from the paper. Stack two circles and put the goodies in the center. Gather the outer edges of the circle to form a pouch. Twist the paper above the treats. Wrap the “stem” with floral tape. You may need to trim excess paper before binding. Twist a piece of tape around a pencil to make vine tendrils.

Full-moon Flavor Bags

  • Brown paper lunch bags
  • Stamps + ink pad
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Hole punch
  • Black ribbon or seam binding

Stamps the bags with fun words or pictures and fill with goodies. Fold corners back. Fold top of bag 1 1/2 inches down. Make a 2 inch paper moon. Glue moon to front of bag in top right corner. Punch two small holes through moon and bag 1/4 inch apart. Repeat in another spot in the moon. Cut two 5-inch pieces of seam binding and thread through the holes; knot to form bats (they will also secure the bag). Trim wings with scissors. To watch a visual demonstration, check out this video (just avoid all the candy she has in that bowl!).

Hand them out to your guests, and watch as they marvel at these precious bags and their delicious contents.

These crafts are from the book Martha Stewart’s Handmade Holiday Crafts.

For more party ideas follow us at or Twitter @greenhalloween


Tweets & Tips

Tuesday, October 8th, 2013

We held recently a twitter party to share healthy Halloween tips. In case you missed it (don’t worry, there were quite a few folks who had to put their little goblins to bed!)  we’ve compiled a list of the best #greenhalloween tricks and treats. Thanks to all our wonderful party-goers for their great suggestions!


What to do on Halloween Day / Night

  • Have your child eat a full meal before going out.
  • Make sure your child eats two rainbows of produce two weeks before and after Halloween. Learn more at Today I Ate a Rainbow.
  • Trade candy for Legos or other toys.
  • Bring candy to work the next day (the office my suffer from a sugar high, but the candy is bound to disappear quickly).
  • Pack your own healthy treats for your child to have while walking from house to house. Later, donate the candy s/he acquired.
  • Try reverse Trick or Treating. Instead of taking junky candy, go to your neighbors and give them a fair trade gift. Help empower workers.

Tips for Parties/ Decorations / Costumes

  • Campaign for Safe Cosmetics found 10 out of 10 Halloween makeup kits tested contain lead! Stay safe and make your own face paint.
  • Who says piñatas have to be full of candy? Fill that baby up with little prizes!
  • Grow your own pumpkins! Can you get it to be this big?
  • “Disposable?” More like reusable! Wash your plastic cutlery to use for all your parties. Or, try bamboo picnic ware.
  • Need some fun, eco-party inspiration? Try a Healthy Child Party Kit.
Favorite Treats (Recommended by #greenhalloween party friends)


For more healthy tips follow us on Facebook or Twitter @greenhalloween


Candy Alternatives 2013

Monday, September 30th, 2013

Okay, so you’ve decided to make your Halloween a green one. You don’t want the trick-or-treaters or party guests coming to your house to ingest any GMOS, dyes, or preservatives. Good for you! Welcome to the Green Halloween movement. So now you’re thinking, “What the heck should my kids eat instead?”  We know it’s tough to sift through all the options, so we at Green Halloween have prepared a stellar list of candy alternatives for you.


1. Honest Kids – Honest Tea Drink Pouches

Trick-or-treating through the whole neighborhood can really work up a sweat! Keep the kids hydrated by passing out an Appely Ever After or Berry Berry Good Lemonade. Each pouch is only 40 calories and sweetened with only fruit juice. Plus, Honest Tea participates in the TerraCycle program!

2. Nature’s Path Bars

These granola bars are chock-full of whole grains, protein, and fiber. They also have a gluten free selection. Their best-selling Pumpkin-N-Spice bars goes perfectly with the holiday. Nature’s path is certified by the Non-GMO project. Nature’s Path doesn’t see why healthy food should be boring and tasteless, and we whole-heartedly agree!


The company’s selection of LÄRABARs , über bar, and ALT bar, are all delicious, and all nutritious. Each LÄRABAR flavor contains no more than 9 ingredients. In addition, LÄRABAR participates in both the TerraCycle program and the Non-GMO project.

4. Bare Naked Fruit Snacks

Bare Fruit snacks are a series of baked apple, mango, and apricot chips. And get this; they are 100% carbon neutral. With apples straight out of Washington State, when Bare Naked says “naked,” they mean it! No added sugar or preservatives.

5. Kind Snacks

The lip-smacking combo of whole nuts, fruits, and whole grains are sublime. Kind believes that if you can’t pronounce and ingredient, it shouldn’t go into your body. Family Circle Magazine even named Kind bars one of the best snacks for kids.

6. Plum Organics: Mashup & Jammy Sammy

Plum Organics minimal processing ensures that the fruit has the highest nutritional value possible. The Jammy Sammy is an organic cereal bars filled with delicious fruit. There’s no high-fructose corn syrup in these babies. Mashups are fruit purée snacks that come in 12 awesome flavors.  Both these snacks come in BPA-free recycled packaging.

7. Bumble Bar Minis

Bumble Bars are scrumptious rice snack bars. They come in 14 different flavors – nutty, fruity, or chocolaty goodness! Their Juno Bars come in similar flavors, but are made with protein-rich quinoa. Bumble takes pride in their commitment to people and the planet. They buy from local co-ops and farms, monitor their waste levels, and even use cornstarch packing peanuts in when shipping products.

8. Barbara’s Snackimals Cookies

These nibbles take animal crackers to a whole new level. With 6 flavors like snickerdoodle and double chocolate, we are going Ape! Barabara’s has been committed to providing customers with healthy, wholesome food for over 40 years.

9. Health Warrior Chia Bars

Chia seeds powered the Aztec Empire, and now they will power you and your little warriors on your trick-or-treating expedition. Chia is the “ultimate superfood,” and Health Warrior has harnessed the power of chia into 6 flavored snack bars.

10. Seasnax Seaweed

I know, I know, you might be a little shocked that we’re suggesting you give away seaweed on Halloween. BUT, seaweed is the vegetable of the sea; it is mineral rich and low in calories. Plus Seasnax has a variety of flavors (Chipotle and Toasty Onion for new recruits and RAW for diehards). So jump right in, the water’s fine.


For more ideas, check out our Candy Cheat Sheet. Or, check us out on Facebook or Twitter @greenhalloween