#174 Healthy Halloween
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"Don't you know what's goin' on out there? This is no Sunday School picnic!"

Ben, in Night of the Living Dead


Beating the Holiday Boos By Denis Faye
Beachbody's Guide to a Healthy Halloween

Halloween kind of sneaks up on you, doesn't it? One minute, you're fretting over how to eat healthy during the upcoming holidays when suddenly BANG! It's midnight on October 31st, and you're dressed as a giant M&M, going through your kid's trick-or-treat booty looking for a little treat before bed. They're just little Snickers—you can eat three or four guilt free, right? Wrong. Oh, the shame.

Well okay, so maybe that exact thing hasn't happened to you, but something close has, surely. So what's a giant M&M to do? As usual, Beachbody has come up with a few suggestions.

Candy ain't that dandy.
How tough do you want to be on your youngsters? Trick-or-treating is right up there with Easter egg hunts and Santa Claus visits for most kids. Deny them and you might have a revolution on your hands. But if you must, try replacing candy gathering with a trip to an age-appropriate haunted house or some other community event. Then you can stop somewhere for ice cream on the way home. No, ice cream isn't good for you, but it's much better than a giant bag of candy and it keeps your brood from feeling cheated.

If you decide to allow trick-or-treating, the first thing to do is make sure kids hit the sidewalk with a big, healthy dinner in their belly. This can inhibit urges to sample the loot en route. When the kids get home, insist they turn over the goods. Then you can dole it back out to them a few treats at a time over the next few weeks. If you really want to get Machiavellian about it, once Junior hits the hay, throw half of his candy away. He'll never know the difference.

Finally, lead by example. Just because your neighbors are handing out sugary junk doesn't mean you need to. Although we live in an age when giving out homemade snacks or fruit is frowned upon, your local discount shop should have all kinds of cool little doodads that any kid would be happy to have, from crayons to rubber spacemen to our favorite—Chinese finger traps.

Customize your costume.
Trick-or-treating is dandy, but for many, Halloween is a chance to let your hair down and recognize the night for the pagan bacchanalia it was meant to be. It's a chance to put on a mask and be someone you're not.

It's all about the costume, man. So the first thing we advise is that you throw out that aforementioned M&M outfit. You've been working out all year! You've got a fit body now, so don't hide it! America needs fewer M&Ms and more shirtless barbarians and cheerleaders!

While you're designing your costume, think props. Idle hands are the snacker's worst enemy. If you're a naughty devil carrying around a pitchfork all night, it's a lot harder to get your hands on those nachos. Same goes for masks. There's no way around it; you're going to eat and drink less if you wear a gorilla mask.

With a few simple shifts in thinking and a little planning, Halloween can be turned into a pretty healthy holiday. If you can get by all those candied apples and individually wrapped snacks without gorging, congratulations. Thanksgiving is going to be a snap!

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5 Fat-Fighting Foods to Add to Your Diet!
By Monica Ciociola

Here's a twist on dieting you might like: instead of pointing out all the forbidden chocolates and other sweets and treats you can't have, let's talk about what you can have! Of course, just adding these "fat-fighting" foods to a poor diet of pizza and potato chips won't give you a figure like Anna Kournikova. But if you replace some of the bad calories you're currently consuming with calories from these foods, you might just be nicely surprised next time you step on the scale.

1. Apples. The skin of apples contains pectin, an insoluble fiber that serves as nature's own appetite suppressant. It's also believed that the scent of green apples is an effective stress reducer so keep a few out on your kitchen counter or at your desk.

2. Beans. High-fiber beans such as chickpeas, lima beans, and kidney beans make you feel fuller longer so you eat less and temper those unnatural cravings.

3. Dairy. Eating 3 to 4 daily servings of dairy, such as low- or nonfat milk, cheese, and yogurt may help burn more fat by shifting energy stored in fat cells to working muscles, according to a recent study. Not only will it help get rid of old fat cells, but it'll make it easier to keep the weight off for good!

4. Oatmeal. Try starting your day with a bowl of oatmeal instead of a Krispy Kreme. The regular, slow-cooking kind is much better for you than the sweetened, over-processed "instant" type. Oatmeal is a great source of the essential fatty acid GLA, and it contains a cholesterol-fighting combination of fiber, protein, and complex carbohydrates.

5. Nuts and seeds. These contain a lot of fat-fighting protein and fiber that will help you lean down—as long as you don't overdo it as they're also high in calories and fat. Filling an empty Altoids container with raw almonds or walnuts will help with portion control and give you a healthy and filling snack when you're on the go.

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