Halloween Leftovers: The Unassuming Evil
It hides in the shadows. In decorative dishes across America, it waits for our most vulnerable moments – the mid-day lull, the breakfast-less morning, the hour-long episode of “Deadliest Warrior” – and strikes with an unrelenting barrage of saturated fat and empty calories.
Forget Freddy. Michael Myers? Meh. Leatherface, Chucky, Jason Voorhees: All these chumps pale in comparison to the horror that is a leftover fun size Snickers bar. From a health and fitness perspective, Halloween holdovers like bite-sized Milky Ways and pumpkin-shaped Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are the true terrors in early November. While a Nutrageouscan’t mangle you with a chainsaw and wear your face as a gruesome mask, it can do nightmarish things to your body.
My girlfriend and I purchased like 10 bags of Halloween candy to give out to trick-or-treaters this year. We don’t live in a heavily populated area with loads of kids, so the eight bags of 50 count candy seemed like overkill. By the time this article gets published, we’ll still most likely be in possession of about 45 Baby Ruth’s, 30 Snickers, 45 Almond Joys and 10,000 Tootsie Rolls (Does anyone like these candies besides her?) Being a former chocolate junkie, this is about as risky to my health as weekending at Camp Crystal Lake.
If you happen to be surrounded by a lot of post-Halloween candy like myself, however, fear not. You can defeat these seemingly invincible killers (at least until they rise from the grave next year.)
Contrary to whatever your mom told you growing up, not all Halloween candy is really that bad for you. Got any lollipops lying around? Finish them. Since they take so long to eat, you actually trick your body into thinking you’ve eaten more. On top of that, they contain no fat and are very low in calories. Happen to have any dark chocolate? This stuff’s actually good for your heart and helps lower blood pressure. It’s like the Shrek to milk chocolate’s Hannibal Lector. Speaking of milk chocolate, avoid this stuff like a zombie plague. One regular size Snickers bar has 215 calories, 12 grams of sugar and 15 grams of fat. You want a real scare? Eat a bowlful of these and take a look in the mirror. And it’s not just chocolate that will have you running for the hills. Take candy corn, for instance. These little multi-colored bastards are nothing but high fructose corn syrup parasites.
The reason Halloween candy is so deceptively evil is that in often comes in such small sizes. One fun size Snickers here, another a couple hours later, and a few more in the evening and you’ve just eaten a couple full size candy bars.
Want a sweet fix without the horrible consequences to your diet? Make some trail mix with raisins, nuts, and dried fruit and throw in a little bit of chocolate for a good protein-filled snack. Why not make some pudding with chocolate or vanilla protein powder?
Halloween’s just the start of a three month assault of candy, cake, cookies, and other diet no-no’s. Santa Claus might as well be Pennywise the clown when it comes to the holiday food associated with him. Why not get started on the right track now and be smart about your holiday food choices. If you value your body and want to maintain a proper diet, eat junk in moderation and amend recipes to include more nutrients. You’ll be fit and able to outrun Michael Myers no problem.
About John Brhel John Brhel is a freelance writer from upstate New York that enjoys picking apart life's idiosyncrasies and listening to Huey Lewis & the News.