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Tricking or Treating?

By Erica Bartlett

trick or treat jack o lanternsIs Halloween an excuse to finally buy candy? Or do you buy candy you don’t like, hoping you won’t eat it, only to eat it anyway and then feel guilty about it? Do you ever feel resentful that you’re expected to have sweets for trick-or-treaters, knowing that you won’t be able to resist it but not wanting to disappoint the children at your door?


Halloween magnifies some of the struggles you may face year-round. Candy surrounds us on all sides. It shows up in every store, in a bewildering and beguiling array of options: chewy, crunchy, gooey, jaw-breaking, sweet, sour, chocolaty, nutty, fruity, and more in all shapes and sizes.


Even if you only intend to get a small amount, it can be hard to ignore the call of those brightly colored bags. This is especially true if you trick yourself, saying it’s for the kids when it’s really for you. If you’ve deprived yourself of all things sweet, the urge to buy, then eat, lots of candy will only grow stronger.


You may turn to eating in secret, perhaps polishing off a bag or two of Halloween goodies before the holiday arrives, then replacing them before anyone notices they’re gone.


Instead of tricking yourself, treat yourself. Choose to eat exactly what you want without guilt. Maybe it’s in the Halloween aisle, maybe it’s somewhere else. Whatever it is, remind yourself that you are worth enjoying what you eat and that you’ll enjoy it more when you’re hungry and you eat it without guilt. Give yourself several minutes to savor your treat. Remember why you love it so you won’t be tricked into eating candy that you don’t need or even want.



About the author

Erica Bartlett discovered mindful eating in her early 20's, and it changed her life. Not only did it allow her to lose half her body weight and maintain that loss for over ten years, it also helped her discover many new things that she loves in addition to food. One of these newer passions is working with others who have food and weight concerns, which is why she is now a licensed Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating facilitator and a certified Health Coach. Her website is www.rediscoveringfoodmaine.com, and she keeps a weekly blog at www.losingbattle-erica.blogspot.com


  1. Carmen Lopez says:

    I can identify with this. I have bought two times already the chocolates for my grandson. I’m afraid to have one because I am trying to lose weight ,then this happens . I binge and had the whole bag! Maybe as you say ,if I just take one without feeling guilty ,I woul be able to just enjoy one and stop

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