So many people ask me if I allow my kids to have sugar.
I do… but I limit it.
Every single one of my friends that grew up with parents that were strict about sugar, now crave candy and sweets beyond what I think is normal. I had one friend that grew up with severe sugar restrictions and as a forty-something would snack on candy all day long. She would buy bags of candy for trick or treaters and eat the whole bag herself and then have to buy more.
So, as much as I would love for my kids to not have any refined-sugar at all, our reality is that they do have it in small amounts. I do allow them to go trick-or-treating and the good thing is that they both only like a couple different candy bars. I allow them to keep those and we donate the rest to Mobile Loaves & Fishes.
I make them eat the candy by the next day and get it over with so they aren’t stringing out the sugar consumption for days and weeks.
We don’t get trick-or-treaters where we live however when we lived in California, we would give away little toys from Oriental Trading Company and the kids loved them.
Both of my kids know how to read labels and I encourage them to look for treats that have 8 mg or less of sugar. I would say generally most treats have 15 mg and up, per serving.* and I insist on no artificial sweeteners. As bad as sugar and high fructose corn syrup is for you, artificial sweeteners are so much worse.
If I make sugar restriction a big deal, my kids crave it more and become obsessed with it (and drive me crazy). I try to be pretty casual about it, even if inside I’m freaking out.
Enjoy Halloween and then go back to making healthy choices!
*The recommended amount for children is 12 mg of sugar or 3 teaspoons a day; for women 20 mg or 5 teaspoons a day, for men 36 mg or 9 teaspoons a day.