Beliefnet
Chattering Mind

Every October 31st there comes that moment when your darling child, with cheeks pink from excitement, plops their costumed self down in the hallway and gleefully peers into that sugary, preservative- and food dye-laden sack of Sweet Tarts, M&Ms, and Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. And every year, it’s me who feels like passing out. Hey holistic parents, what do you have planned this year for the Halloween Candy Problem? What do you do to prevent your child from going into sugar shock?

Many wise people make arrangements in advance with their children, and trade the sack for a really good present. Other parents let the kids pig out the first night, and then place the bag on a high kitchen shelf that within a day gets lower, and lower, until it mysteriously reaches the level of the garbage can. And then, of course, there’s always UNICEF, but my kids always manage to convince neighbors to contribute generously–in money and Mars bars.

I must admit with great sadness–and I do mean great–that I’ve pretty much let my kids have their way these past two years–that is, I let them eat their candy over time, not all at once. For one thing, they seem to tolerate candy better, and not get as hyper, now that they’re ten and twelve. And they are discouraged from ever eating candy on an empty stomach. A little something ingested beforehand, with protein in it if possible, seems to keep them from swinging on the chandelier. If I put too much energy into forbiding obnoxious substances, it creates a creepy cathexis, and the kids want whatever I ban all the more.

One thing I have noticed is that the makers of natural candies don’t put a lot of effort into packaging their products for this harvest holiday. I guess it would be prohibitively expensive to stock only natural treats like Sun Drops.

I know there are numerous parents out there still towing the natural line, and I admire them hugely. Plus, the parents of children with active allergies must forbid candy consumption; there is no other option. Give us ideas, you guys! I’d love to hear from you!

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