I’ve had several patients ask me what we do for Halloween to help our son avoid overindulging in sugary treats. While we are all for the occasional healthy (and sometimes not even so healthy!) treat or snack, the candy that is generously given out at Halloween present problems both in quantity and quality. Since our son is Feingold sensitive, going trick or treating was a necessity for us, but before long, a real bummer for him, because he could not eat any of the very tempting candy he collected.

Then we found out about the Halloween Witch.

It turns out that if you leave your candy out on the back or front porch or in the garage on Halloween night, the Halloween Witch (who LOVES junky candy!) will scoop it all up, and in thanks, will leave healthy treats, spooky books and puzzles, and other non-diabetes-causing goodies.

The Witch comes very soon after the candy is left, so the child can enjoy the goodies at the same time their friends are that night, and in the days ahead. The more the child leaves, the more the Witch leaves, so it makes the act of trick-or-treating fun, even when the child knows he or she cannot keep any of the candy.

The Halloween Witch has been visiting our house for 8 years now, and it has turned the holiday from a bummer to a hum-dinger. Our son loves trick or treating with his friends and collecting as much as he can, just like the other kids. Now, he even creates a separate pile of his “stash” to give to his friends before leaving the remainder outside for the Witch. Reading the new spooky book has become a Halloween night tradition and we love that he is making positive connections with healthy snacks versus junk food.

There are few “magic bullets” in parenting, but the Halloween Witch has been one for us! If you try her out next year, please send us your Halloween Witch stories!

PS – Now that our son is 13 years old, and is “on to” our little games with Santa and the Easter Bunny and the Halloween Witch, he is not beyond milking it for all it’s worth: Last summer he suggested to me that we try to contact the “Fourth of July American” to exchange all the candy thrown out at the parade! Clever boy.

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