This Halloween, don’t let those little bite-size treats trick you into TP-ing your own weight loss efforts. They may look cute and harmless, but underneath their brightly colored wrappers lies a dark and spooky secret! (Hint: they are not what they seem.)
We all know that a full-size candy bar can pack a high-calorie punch. For example, a regular Snickers bar contains 250 calories, two Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups contain 222 calories, and a regular Kit Kat bar has 220 calories. But when it comes to miniature versions of the same items, we’re led to believe that they are a “healthier” alternative.
But here’s the thing: Those smaller versions still contain a considerable amount of sugar and calories. For example, a Fun-Size Snickers bar has 80 calories, a serving of three Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Miniatures packs in 130 calories, and a snack-size Kit Kat still manages 140 calories.
Fewer calories are a good thing, right? Sure. Until you realize the dark secret. Okay, there are actually two of them. First, for many of us, one is rarely enough. Look, it can be downright difficult to not terrorize a bag of bite-size goodies! So, before you know it, you may end up consuming more calories than if you had just enjoyed a full size treat and called it a day. But there’s a more menacing secret…
The slow build: Just an extra 100 calories a day in your diet can cause your weight to slowly, and stealthily, creep higher.
So how do you keep those yummy little terrors at bay during Halloween, and all year round for that matter? We’ve prepared seven frighteningly simple Halloween weight loss tricks that will have you screaming in joy…
1. Watch What You Buy
Everyone knows you don’t invite a vampire into your home unless you want to be vampire food. The same goes for high-sugar treats. They can’t lure you if they’re not there. But if you must buy candy (say for Trick-or-Treaters), then buy the stuff you don’t care for. Candy corn not your thing? Guess what those creepy kids are getting when they ring your doorbell!
2. Put It Away
Treat your sweets like they’re mini-Medusa’s and keep your eyes off them! Whose gaze isn’t drawn to those bold, shiny candy wrappers? It’s almost impossible to look away. So put them away! You’ll be less likely to even think about them if you don’t see them.
3. Enjoy Healthier Options
When your sweet tooth comes knocking at your door, you don’t have to completely turn it away in disappointment. Instead, enjoy a healthier alternative like fruit, nuts, or Greek yogurt. You can get your fix without breaking your weight loss plan.
4. Chew Gum
Give your tastebuds a burst of sweetness and give your jaw something to do. Studies have shown that chewing gum can help to manage cravings and tame hunger. But stick with sugar-free gum, which has about half the calories (approximately 5) of regular gum.
5. Put a Limit On It
When it comes to a successful diet, total deprivation isn’t usually a smart strategy, as it can often lead to moments of overindulgence. It’s okay to enjoy yourself occasionally. The key is to set a limit. Give yourself clear rules on how much you’ll allow yourself and when. To help you stay on track and avoid over-doing it, keep and count your wrappers.
6. Manage Your Hunger
The hungrier you are, the more likely you are to give in to those ghoulish cravings. Keep your meals and snacks high in protein and fiber (and low in sugars and simple carbs) or try eating smaller portions more often.
7. Drink Low-Calorie Beverages
Water, fruit-infused water, seltzer water, hot tea or coffee sans sugar, and other low- or no-sugar beverages can all help temper your cravings. Plus, they’ll fill your belly and reduce hunger.
Now that you know what’s really hiding in the candy dish and how to deal with it, Halloween can be a little less terrifying to your weight loss goals. Practice these simple tips, and you’ll set yourself up for long-term success.
Have a safe and happy Halloween!