This will be perhaps the strangest Halloweens that any of us have experienced. The pandemic will dramatically impact what was the “usual”…i.e. our doorbells ringing and children dressed up in costumes holding their baskets out seeking candy. A number of patients have told me that their neighbors organized events that will still allow the children to be dressed up but social distancing and having the candy out in car trunks will diminish the person to person contact that has always been a staple of this holiday.
This brings me to the weight control topic of Halloween candy: With many people now working from home and not going to the office, the “left-over” candies will not be making their way to the communal office kitchen area. What we buy will most likely remain in our houses. With the best of intentions of not eating these candies, the temptation is quite high to not let them go to waste, hence the reason why this becomes challenging form a weight control perspective.
Another major issue involving Halloween candy is the small, bite-sized nature of the candy we buy to give out. It seems quite innocuous to eat a very small Reeces pieces portion, a mini Three Musketeers, a small Mars Bar etc. However, cumulatively, as time passes by, you realize that the big bag of candy in your pantry becomes emptier and emptier. We do not tend to eat lots at one time, but we will continue to hit the bag for small portions.
Also remember that the average weight gain in America (before Covid stats and this will only worsen) is 7.4 pounds between Halloween and the New Year. This weight gains starts with the Halloween experience. My suggestion: Do not keep any extra candy in your house. When Halloween passes, if the candy you bought (hopefully you did not buy much as that doorbell will hardly ring this year) is not gone, throw it out. Do not let it sit in your pantry as those little guys will call you by your first name every time the pantry door is opened.
Enjoy the holiday….and stay the course of weight control focus so you can enjoy many future Halloweens when things will not be so weird.