October 2009 Issue

FOOD FUN FACT: Healthy Halloween Treats
CHRISTI'S COMMENTARY: My Halloween Dilemma
FOOD CORNER: Breakfast Apple Crisp
EVENTS: Holiday Survival Teleclass


 

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Healthy Halloween Treats

Did you know that just 2 teaspoons of sugar can decrease the effectiveness of your t-cells (white blood cells that fight infection) by 50%, and that the effect can last for 4 hours? The more sugar you eat, the less effective the T-cells, and the longer the effect lasts.

With all the candy we consume on Halloween, it's no wonder we all start to get sick around this time of year.

Never fear! I just discovered a great eBook written by Dr. RitaMarie Loscalzo (a doctor and mother of two) that will help you celebrate Halloween without all the usual candy and processed food.

Her eBook, "Healthy Halloween Treats" is filled with quick, healthy and delicious alternatives to the candy and processed foods most of us overindulge in this time of year.

Dr. RitaMarie's eBook is written mainly for parents, but those of you without kids will love the recipes, too (particularly because chocolate is the main ingredient in most of them!).

To check out the recipes like Chocolate Spiders and Peppermint Patties, visit Dr. RitaMarie's eBook page here.

 


 

 

My Halloween Dilemma

Because I'm still transitioning out of my "new mom sabbatical," I decided to reprint one of my most popular newsletters from years past. 

When I first published this issue in October 2006, I received hundreds of responses from readers who wanted to share the healthy Halloween treats they hand out (or received when they were kids).  I've included all of your ideas in this new version of the newsletter, as well as a few new ones of my own.

Enjoy!

***********************

October, 2006

Ben, Evan, and I moved into our very first house this summer.

Which means - I get to welcome trick-or-treaters to my door for the very first time!

Part of me is really excited.  I can't wait to meet all of my new neighbors.

The other part of me wants to turn off all the lights and hide on October 31, so no one knows I'm home.

 

*******

Here’s my dilemma:

My business (and passion) is helping busy people figure out how to eat healthy and give themselves permission to take insanely good care of themselves.

One of the best ways to eat healthy and take care of yourself is:

Avoid Candy!

Most of us know that candy is addictive.  Once you have even a little bit, you need/want more.  Trust me, I know, because I usually get addicted to Candy Corn this time of year.  And I spent my entire childhood just waiting to my sugar high every Halloween.

Have you noticed how candy wreaks havoc on kids’ tiny bodies? It makes them hyper, then sad, then moody. It makes them hungry, cranky, and unfocused.

(Psst - all of those side effects happen to adults, too.)

Now that I know what sugar really does to our bodies and mood, giving out candy to trick-or-treaters makes me feel like a hypocrite.  I’m supposed to be helping families get healthier, not sicker!

By giving out candy, I know I’m contributing to the health problems - like diabetes, obesity, and ADD - that are pervasive in today’s young population.

 

*******

 

The introvert in me says, “Christi, just turn off the lights, hide, and pretend you're not home. Then you won't have to give out candy at all."

The health counselor and mom in me says, "Christi, hiding won't solve anything. You're going to face this dilemma every Halloween.  Why not take a stand and hand out something healthier than candy?"

That's when the high schooler in me speaks up.  The high schooler is the part of me that wants to fit in, to be popular, to have people like me.

In other words, the part of me who doesn’t want to be known in our new neighborhood as

“The Lady In The Green House

Who Gives Out Raisins for Halloween!”

You see, when my brothers and I went trick-or-treating as kids, we avoided the houses that gave out raisins.  Yuck!

Do I really want to be “That Lady?”

 

*******

 

I sat with this decision for a while, and tried to figure out what to do. It’s a tough decision.

If I hand out something really healthy like raisins, there's a good chance the kids will throw them in the trash or hand them right over to mom and dad.

If I hand out healthy and delicious homemade treats like popcorn balls or healthy cookies, the parents will throw them out because they won't come in "safe" pre-wrapped colorful plastic bags.

That just kills me, by the way - the artificial, sugar-filled candy that comes from the store is considered "safer" than homemade healthy treats made by neighbors... simply because it's packaged.  Does that seem warped to you?  It does to me.

When I explained my dilemma to my husband, he said, "Christi, it's just one night out of the whole year, and everyone else in our neighborhood will hand out candy, you know."

I know, I know.  Trust me, sweetheart, I know.  The high schooler in me wants to hand out jumbo-size candy bars so I'll be the most popular mom on the block.

But just because everyone else has done it this way forever doesn’t mean that we should continue to do it.

*******

When I really thought about it, I realized that handing out candy on Halloween affects more than just the kids who trick or treat.  Do you know why?

Because the candy that's left over from Halloween ends up in candy bowls all across corporate America, where we adults eat and eat at 3:00 p.m. every day until all the candy is gone.

Halloween candy also ends up in mom and dad's bellies, because we are just as addicted as our kids.  Many parents I spoke with this year said that they love to use trick or treating as an excuse to stock up on candy.

Because I coach women who are trying to get over their sugar addictions, I see an even bigger picture.

You see, the sugary habits we form during Halloween feed our sweet addiction during the holiday season.  Sometimes, our Halloween stash lasts us until Thanksgiving, so once that holiday rolls around, we're already addicted to sugar.  That means, we can't help but binge on pies and cookies and party cocktails.   Our sweet tooths are just too strong by that point.

The truth is...

How we approach Halloween

Sets the tone for the rest of the year.

 

*******

Let's face it: it’s really, really hard to eat healthy these days.

It takes guts.  It takes moxy! It takes the courage to go against the grain. Sometimes, it means you have to be unpopular for a while.

Until everyone else realizes how good it feels to eat healthy, too.

The good news is, it only takes a few people to start a Healthy Rebellion. 

Because you subscribe to this newsletter, you are already ahead of your time.  By focusing on your health, you are already leading your own Healthy Rebellion!

So, what did I decide to do this year for Halloween?

Well, I imagined what the world would be like if we all stopped handing out candy at Halloween - and handed out something healthy instead.

And I decided I liked that image a lot better than the image of me wearing a "Most Popular Neighborhood Mom" ribbon.

So this year, I decided to go with what I know is best for all those kids coming to my door. I ’m handing out healthy treats.  Yes, it's going to be expensive, and there's a chance that those treats will end up in the trash.

But that's OK. Because, in the end, it's not about the treats.  It's about creating a change.  It's about inviting other families to give themselves permission to eat a little healthier and say no to the unhealthy habits we've all gotten into (and I'm guilty as anyone). 

I've decided that I’m OK being known as The-Lady-In-The-Green-House-Who-Hands-Out-Fruit-Leather-Bars.

Being healthy IS cool, and here at Boston Health Coach, we're starting a new rebellion - the rebellion to eat healthy, live juicy, and practice guilt-free self-care. 

This year, the rebellion starts with Halloween.

Care to join me?!

*******

Healthy Halloween Treats

If you’re looking for some candy alternatives to hand out this Halloween, here are some ideas for you:

- gold or silver dollars

- Boxes of organic raisins

- Mini bags of pretzels

- Cacao-covered goji berries

- Individually-wrapped, 100% natural, no-sugar added Stretch Island Fruit Leather (**this is what I did the first Halloween in my house **)

- Lara Bars or Raw Revolution snack bars

- If you want to spend lots of money on your trick or treaters, you can buy raw treats from sites like www.rawguru.com or www.rawbakery.com.

- Pencils, stickers, and other goodies found online or at the local drugstore - these can be a fun, cheap alternative to candy (last year I went to the drugstore the morning of Halloween and got lots of glow-in-the-dark goodies at serious discounted prices!).  Some moms collect all the party favors and goodies that grandparents give throughout the year... then have enough to give away by the time Halloween comes.

 

Another option - "Cider or Chili Open House": a mom I know hosts a “Cider Open House” on Halloween, where parents and kids can stop in for some homemade apple cider before they head home for the night. If you don’t like opening your door all throughout the night, how about hosting a one-hour healthy treat stop at your house?

Another option - "Selective Trick or Treating": This year, a few moms from my Holistic Moms Network will be taking our kids trick or treating to our own houses - that way, we can load them up on healthy foods first.

Another option - "The Sweet Fairy": Last year was the first year that we took Evan trick or treating.  We let him keep one piece of candy (we only went to four houses), and then we left the rest out for the Sweet Fairy.  In the morning, the candy was gone and the Sweet Fairy had left a cool car in its place for Evan to play with.  We'll be using this strategy again this year... but probably letting him pick three pieces of candy to have over three days.

 

*******

 

If you got this far, thanks for reading...

If you would like to email me with your thoughts about this commentary, please give in to the temptation... I'd love to hear from you.

Also, if you have any healthy Halloween tips of your own, please send 'em my way.  I love hearing holiday success stories!

 

*******

P.S. If you liked this issue of "Nourishing Nuggets" please forward it along to friends, family, and colleagues.  It's a great way to show people you care about their health.

 

 

"HOW TO SURVIVE THE HOLIDAYS... Without Gaining Weight or Going Crazy!" Teleclass

The live call is over, but you can still access the .mp3 recording and all class notes!  For more info on this teleclass, click here.

 

 

"No More Emotional Eating!: The Top 3 Secrets a Health Counselor Used to End Her Emotional Eating Battle For Good"

The live call is over, but you can still access the .mp3 recording and all class notes!  For more info on this teleclass, click here.

 

HOLISTIC MOMS NETWORK MEETING

FOR WHO: Moms, dads, parents-to-be, grandparents, or any practitioners interested in holistic parenting

WHEN: Tuesday, December 4 from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

WHERE: North Andover Public Library

WHAT: Our topic is ""Herbal Remedy Chest for Moms and Kids" and our guest speaker is Mischa Schuler of Wild Carrot Herbs

COST: FREE for all

For more info on HMN, check out our HMN website.

 

***********

 

If you are looking for inspiration around healthy living, please check out the archived copy of all past teleclasses that I keep on my website.

 

 

 

MAKE SMARTER FOOD BUYING DECISIONS

 

Do you ever feel intimidated by the health food store?

 

Are you looking for some new cooking inspiration?

Are you trying to convince your kids or spouse that healthy eating is the way to go?

If any of these questions rang true for you, I want to introduce you to a DVD that has helped hundreds of my readers.

My "Healthy Shopper" DVD is a fun, information-packed DVD that follows me through Whole Foods as I give a condensed version of my traditional health food store tour.

Curious? Want to learn more?

Here's the main DVD page, where you can find out all the details.

Here's a testimonial from a busy mom who bought the DVD:

"I was REALLY IMPRESSED with your DVD. It was not only full of great information and tips, but it was beautifully produced too. I was surprised by how professional it was!

Not only did I like it, but my 5 year-old-son and my 2 year-old- daughter loved it too! You're a celebrity at our house now. My kids want to meet you and "play at your house" (the highest compliment) but more importantly -- they want me to bring home some beets & daikon radish to try! (I bet you didn't even realize you were making a kid-friendly video!)."

- Sarah Zeldman, Solutions For Busy Moms

The DVD would make a great holiday gift for that special health-conscious someone!

To learn more about the DVD or purchase your copy... click here.

 

 

 

*************************

 

RECIPE: Breakfast Apple Crisp

 

This breakfast is designed to be eaten cold and raw.  But, it can also be warmed up, which will make your home smell deliciously like cinnamon.

 

 

Ingredients:

- organic apple 

- raisins or dates or figs 

- almond meal (optional) 

- raw walnuts or pecans 

- cinnamon 

- maple syrup or raw honey or stevia 

- melted butter (optional)

 

Instructions:

1. Cut the apple into little chunks. Put in a bowl.

 

2. Sprinkle with almond meal, dried fruit, nuts, cinnamon, and sweetener. If you eat butter, you can drizzle this on top.

 

 

If you've got a sensitive digestive tract, the fruit and nuts won't digest well together in your belly. You'll want to enjoy the apple alone first... wait 30 minutes... then eat the dried fruit and nuts together.

 

 

 

Check out other

Delicious Fall Recipes!

 

 

ABOUT CHRISTI

 

Christi Collins, H.H.C., AADP, is a Certified Holistic Health Counselor accredited by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners.

**Are you wondering what a Holistic Health Counselor is?  This description may help!

Christi studied Eastern/Western nutrition and modern health counseling at The Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City.  She is addicted to learning about nutrition and wellness, and is constantly experimenting with her own food and self-care.

Christi's goal is to help people fall in love with "The Big Three": Healthy Eating, Juicy Living, and Guilt-Free Self-Care.

She works with very busy women who are struggling to eat healthy and take insanely good care of themselves... without feeling stressed or guilty about it.

Christi is a three-time marathoner and triathlete, an avid pianist, and a mom to Henry and Evan.

To read more fun facts and stories about Christi, click here.

These days, Christi is best reached by email.

She is not working with individual clients at the moment, but will be happy to refer you to another holistic health counselor.

To visit her website, click here.

 

 

 

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