Halloween is a favorite time of year among children and adults, last year American’s spent an estimated 8.4 billion dollars on costumes and candy. It is no wonder that health experts are spooked by the amount of sugar children consume each October. Eating too much sugar can impact children in a number of ways; cavities, hyperactivity and childhood obesity are just a few of the negative results of a diet too high in sugar.
With a few adjustments, it is possible to experience all the fun of the season of ghosts and goblin with none of the negative impact of an unhealthy diet. The American Heart Association recommends that children ages four to eight should consume no more than four teaspoons of added sugar per day, a Twix bar has twenty-four grams of sugar or 6 teaspoons. Sugar isn’t the only issue with candy; sticky candy is a cavity-causing culprit as well. Sticky sweets stay in contact with the teeth for more extended periods of time and get caught in between teeth. The more time the sugar has contact with the teeth the more time bacteria has to feed, and as a result, more acid is produced, increasing the chance of cavities.
There are alternatives to confections for trick-or-treaters that are still sure to delight. Single serve options include pretzels,
crackers, goldfish, granola bars or mini water bottles. Nonfood items are also trendy; a few examples are stickers, silly putty, bubbles, themed pencils, glow sticks and snap bracelets are sure to be a hit. Westerville Pediatric Dental applauds your creativity this Halloween and wishes you all a happy, healthy and spooktacular holiday!