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Halloween Treats: Stop Handing out Bellyaches and Toxins

All the Tricks in Those Treats!

All Hallow’s Eve, my favorite time of year! It’s a time when mischief prevails, and ghosts and ghouls run a muck. It’s also a time for candida to thrive. But just because they ask for a trick or treat on Halloween, Give me something good to eat doesn’t have to mean poison. While the mischief and ghouls are an a must this Halloween, let me show you how to ditch the scary ingredients.

I try to avoid sugary treats. I pass on the chocolate and other sweets that used to make my mouth water. It’s pretty easy, but I’ll be honest: Peanut Butter M & M’s still make me want to cry. When I see them, I shake. My hand trembles—I want them that bad. But then I think about what those candy-coated things really are, and what I’m actually putting into my body for a small blimp of satisfaction: Soy Lecithin—a genetically modified chemical that increases shelf life (as in, infests your body like forever—not even digestion can break it down); and artificial flavors and colors, such as Red Dye #2, a CANCER-carrying carcinogen. Not to mention that artificial flavors and colors are made from cheap, toxic chemicals derived from petroleum and mystery preservatives. So there’s that.

What do I do when I start jonesin for that chocolate and peanut butter goodness? I look for alternatives: Organic, non-deadly, non-genetically modified dark chocolate, with at least 70% real cocoa. I pair it with a tablespoon of my favorite nut butter and voila!  I’m good with this. I’m strong. Until October comes and Kroger taunts me with its jumbo Halloween bags strategically placed at every turn. My hand trembles again, and I have to fight hard. I do win. Every time. No matter how bad I want them, I won’t allow those things in my home. I won’t give that garbage to my children. So, why on October 31st would I give it to yours?

I wouldn’t, and here’s why…

Sugar: Added sugar is high in fructose. Not only is this bad for your teeth, but it does a nasty number on the liver, gut, and heart. Sugar has been linked to Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and even cancer.

Corn Syrup: Sweeter and cheaper than natural sugar, this additive can wreak havoc on the liver. Fatty Liver is one of the most common conditions in the US today. It leads to obesity, of course, as well as diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.

Dextrose: A cheap (processed), added sugar popular with manufacturers because of its affordability. Most of the time, it’s made from genetically modified (GMO) corn. It can cause heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even cancer.

Monoglycerides: Just another fancy name for Trans Fats, which cause diabetes, strokes, and heart attacks. There’s no “safe” level of this ingredient.

TBHQ: A synthetic antioxidant that is used to keep the flavor and color of foods. This preservative is linked to asthma, allergies, and dermatitis.


I will not be the lady passing out candy with scary ingredients like these on Halloween. I also won’t be the lady handing out pennies or toothbrushes. That lady gets her house egged. So, what’s the happy medium? There are yummy alternatives for every occasion, and Halloween is no exception. Foodbabe has compiled a really helpful list of alternatives (although organic, these alternatives are NOT sugar free and should not be consumed on a regular basis). 

  • Instead of Hershey’s bars, choose Endangered Species Organic Chocolate “Bug Bites”
  • Instead of Mounds, choose Nutiva O’Coconuts
  • Instead of Reese’s, choose Justin’s Mini Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups or OCHO Minis
  • Instead of Starburst, choose TruJoy Sweets Organic Fruit Chews
  • Instead of Tootsie Rolls, choose TruJoy Sweets Organic Choco Chews
  • Surf Sweets Organic Candy
  • Instead of Lifesavors, choose YumEarth Organic Candy
  • Instead of Gummy Bears, choose Black Forest Organic Candy
  • Choose YumEarth Candy Corn

Other Alternatives

  • Organic Hot Cocoa Packets
  • Jack-o-lantern Tangerines
  • Pencils, Crayons and Halloween coloring books (Michaels has a great assortment of non-candy items)
  • Halloween Stickers
  • Halloween Stamps
  • Miniature Toys – like Slinkys and bouncy balls.

Final Thoughts

Remember: Halloween doesn’t have to mean a big bag of cheap, toxic candy. There are alternatives out there that your small visitors will appreciate. Treats can be yummy and safe! You just need to know where to look.  Save your conscience, and send those trick or treaters off with safe ingredients this year!



Adrian Schirr

Forum Health Clarkston

7300 Dixie Hwy Suite 500

Clarkston, MI 48346