I have been told by a number of pediatricians that the beginning of November seems to be their busiest time in regards to children coming in with illnesses like the flu and colds. Is it any wonder? The kids were bombarded with sugar only days before! For every tablespoon of sugar consumed, their immune system is suppressed for up to SIX hours!
According to Dr. Jerry Lee Hover, “Eating white sugar will paralyze and hinder your white blood cells from fighting off an infection. Eating 25 teaspoons of sugar will paralyze 92% of your white blood cells for approximately five hours. The average American eats over 42 teaspoons of sugar per day. For example: A banana split has 24 teaspoons of sugar. A 12 oz coke has approx. 8-10 teaspoons, a piece of white bread 2 teaspoons. It must be remembered that sugar or empty calories and junk foods interfere with the working of the body’s immune system.” So on any given day the average person is already taking in an obscene amount of sugar. Times that by the amount of Halloween candy consumed in one sitting and WHAM – here comes that cold!
So, what to do? Should you not let your kids go trick or treating? I doubt many people will jump on board with that idea! Personally, I will let my children go out, but as we did with our son last year, we will have them hand over the candy in exchange for a gift, something they have been really wanting. For older kids, you can offer to buy back their candy. Also, be sure to pump your kids with vitamin D and elderberry so that they are prepared for when they are around the other kids that are fighting off illness. By treating their bodies with immune building nutrients instead of tricking them with immune suppressing sugars, dyes and chemicals, you are helping your children to remain strong and healthy. (You may want to apply this idea to yourself as well, instead of eating the candy yourself, though I know this is easier said than done!)
When it comes to handing out treats, there are some great alternatives to candy. Last year we gave little packages of stickers out to the younger kids. I was surprised to see that when some of the older kids saw the stickers mixed in with the candy that they chose the stickers instead, so I am going the sticker route in lieu of any candy this year.
Here are some other ideas in regards to limiting the non-organic sugar loaded candy while also keeping Halloween a treat:
- Party sized play dough sold in the party packs, which can be found pretty cheap online
- Party packs of crayons
- Temporary tattoos
- Mini slinkies sold in party packs
- Bouncy balls
- Mini packs of organic snacks, such as Annie’s Homegrown Cheddar Bunnies or Back to Nature Crispy Cheddar Crackers
I have seen some great ideas in regards to limiting the non-organic sugar loaded candy while also keeping Halloween ‘green.’ Listed below are links to help you get some ideas. Feel free to share your tips in the comment area!
Also, I will start a thread on the Raising Natural Kids Facebook page for you to share your green, sugar free or sugar “less” Halloween ideas!
(This article can also be seen in the October 2012 issue of the Great South Bay Magazine)