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How to Have a Heart Healthy Halloween

October 29, 2008

Fargo, ND – The spookiest thing North Dakota trick-or-treaters will come across this Halloween won't be ghosts or goblins - it'll be the candy they bring home. Chris Brandt, a licensed registered dietician from Fargo, says Halloween is one of those holidays that doesn't have to be about gorging yourself on sweets anymore. She urges North Dakotans to offer something different instead.

"The American Heart Association recommendations are fabulous. Handing out tattoos or pencils - a lot of kids think that is even better than candy and of course it lasts longer too."

According to the American Heart Association, many children today are suffering from adult health problems such as high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol. Her recommendation for a healthy Halloween is to make certain kids don't go trick-or-treating hungry.

"You want to have them have a healthy meal so they will eat less of the candy. Parents really need to take control, dole out the candy, and not let it be a free-for-all for the children."

Brandt suggests making treat bags smaller, and then store the bags up high so children, as well as parents, aren't tempted to snack on candy later.

Dick Layman/Steve Powers, Public News Service - ND