With Halloween as the official start of the holiday candy season, HISD Nutrition Services Dietitians Julia Jarrell, Alberto Garcia, and Nan Cramer are teaching healthy Halloween classes to elementary school students to help them become responsible trick-or-treaters.
The dietitians teach strategies and techniques to students to prevent overeating candy. Children can consume more than 700 grams of sugar on Halloween night if they go unsupervised, and high amounts of sugar can cause stomachaches, headaches, and cavities.
Stevens Elementary School student Ke’Oshia Johnson picks up a treat during healthy Halloween class.
Excited children in costumes will soon flood neighborhood sidewalks to perform their annual collection of Halloween treats. As plastic pumpkins fill with sugary sweets, parents may ask, “Is it possible to have a healthy Halloween?”
Nutrition Services Education Dietitian Jennifer Lengyel believes it is, through proper education. Lengyel has been teaching elementary school students how to become responsible trick-or-treaters and avoid the issues that come with overindulging.
“The goal is for students to have fun during Halloween, to learn moderation, and take care of their bodies,” Lengyel said. “Talking about how they feel when having too much candy is a better teaching tool than just telling them what not to do.” Continue reading