Healthy (and delicious) Halloween candy alternatives

Did you know that tooth decay is the number one childhood illness? Furthermore, about 1 in 3 kids in the United States are considered overweight or obese. Read on for some healthy ideas as alternatives!

Sugarless chewing gum

Chewing sugar-free gum stimulates saliva, which helps fight tooth decay. is the best treat this Halloween because it leaves no sticky residue and it is sweetened with xylitol–a natural sugar the bacteria is unable to form plaque on. Furthermore, it can actually prevent cavities as it not only dislodges food particles from between the teeth but also increases saliva, which works to neutralize the acids of the mouth and prevent tooth decay.

Mini packages of healthy snacks

Raisins, pretzels, fruit chews, string cheese, granola bars, Goldfish crackers, Pirate’s Booty, and Angie’s Kettle Corn, which is gluten free, are all easy to find and well-liked by kids.

Go fresh

Apple slices with caramel dip, juice boxes, and local honey sticks are a great alternative to candy. You can even find Halloween-themed baby carrots (or “Scarrots”).

Smoothies

Make homemade smoothies with fresh fruits and milkshakes with your favorite frozen yogurt or ice cream. This helps cut down on the sugar intake which can loosen brackets.

Stickers and other Halloween-themed gifts

Break from Halloween candy tradition and opt for fun Halloween-themed pencils, stickers, temporary tattoos, Play-doh, glow-in-the-dark vampire teeth, glow sticks, coloring books and crayons or markers. Crayola even makes a Halloween Crayon Treat Pack. Not only do they last longer than a candy bar, they inspire kids’ imagination – which is exactly what this holiday should do.

Our personal recommendation

Hand out a toothpaste and floss kit! The kids might want candy now, but they’ll thank you later.

What to do with the extra candy? Send it to the troops!

Do you have more healthy trick-or-treat ideas? Share them on our Facebook page! And from everyone at Deschutes Pediatric Dentistry, have a happy Halloween!

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