Healthy Halloween: Tricks & Treats for a Spooky Season

October 19, 2023

Halloween season is upon us, bringing with it spooky fun and sweet treats. We sat down with Lauren Zimmerman, Registered Dietitian at Synchronicity, to share some tips and tricks for enjoying this fun while keeping your health in mind.

Making Memorable Moments

Zimmerman says the most important aspect of Halloween is to make memories and enjoy the time with your family and friends. This is a time for fun and togetherness, so keep this spirit alive in all your activities.

Balanced Eating

You might be tempted to skip meals leading up to Halloween to save calories, but Zimmerman says this often leads to overeating and eating too quickly to fully enjoy your food. Plus, your body still needs nutrition throughout the day.

“By eating regular, balanced meals, you’ll keep your energy levels stable, your mood up and your Halloween experience more enjoyable. Listen to your body, honor your hunger and trust your fullness signals,” she said.

Celebrate with Nutritious Snacks and Meals

“Eating seasonal produce that’s both nutritious and filling can help you stay satisfied and reduce sugar cravings during your Halloween celebrations,” Zimmerman says. It’s easy to add a touch of holiday fun to these nutritious options and even the kids will enjoy them. Below are some of Zimmerman’s favorite snacks and meals.


  • Tangerine pumpkins and banana ghosts (Recipe here)


  • Spooky Spaghetti (Recipe here)
  • One Pot Pumpkin Curry (Recipe here)
  • Sweet Potato Chili (Recipe here)
  • Pumpkin Pancakes (Recipe here)
  • Pumpkin Chicken Stew (Recipe here)

Stay Hydrated

“There’s typically a lot of walking and sweating under those hot costumes on Halloween night, and maintaining hydration is important,” Zimmerman says. Carry a reusable water bottle with you and fill it up whenever possible. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, poor energy and poor digestion.

How Much Candy Is Too Much?

If you’re eating balanced meals throughout the day, having a few pieces of candy doesn’t make a big difference, Zimmerman advises. This is a hard question with no easy answers. In the end, you know your child best. Pay attention to how sugar affects them – does it rev them up and impact their sleep? At the very least, make sure they brush their teeth after enjoying all that candy.

Choosing Healthier Candy

When selecting candy, try to strike a balance. Candy with nuts or nut butter contain a little protein to balance the sugar, Zimmerman says. Options such as Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Snickers are better choices than candies loaded with sugar and dyes such as Skittles. Be selective and intentional about what you choose to eat and pay attention to when the pleasure of your treat starts to dwindle – that’s a sign you’ve had enough, Zimmerman advises.

Non-Candy Alternatives

Looking for ways to surprise the ghouls and ghosts in your yard? Consider picking up individual packages of pretzels, popcorn, glow bracelets/necklaces, bubbles and stickers. These non-candy treats can be a hit with kids and provide a healthier alternative.

Adult Beverages

For the adults, Halloween often includes some fun pit stops for beverages. Ensure you load your cooler with mini-waters and sparkling water, Zimmerman says. Staying hydrated is essential for everyone’s well-being during and after Halloween festivities.


Modern Minds with MUSC Health

Synchronicity is a subsidiary of Modern Minds, a non-profit organization dedicated to treating and empowering mental health and wellbeing. We often partner together to offer truly integrative care for Modern Minds clients, Synchronicity members and the greater Lowcountry community.