Whether you go out Trick or Treating for Halloween this year or not, there will definitely be an abundance of sweets and chocolate treats up for grabs in the next few weeks or months. And sometimes it’s hard to know how to walk the line between good cop and bad cop with how you handle sweet treats. Ellyn Satter, the godmother of Feeding Dynamics and The Division of Responsibility, suggests a very simple way to handle the sugar rush.
Easter, Halloween, Christmas, birthdays, parties, the list goes on. There are moments in the year that naturally involve sweet treats. Satter recommends letting the children enjoy as much or as little indulgence as they fancy on the first couple of days.
“Let him lay out his booty, gloat over it, sort it and eat as much as he wants.” she says in her book Child of Mine, Feeding with Love and Good Sense.
But on the following days, put the sweets away and allow a few alongside a snack or as a dessert. Treat it as precious and also teach that by eating a small amount each day, it won’t have a negative impact on their diet or habits.
And this method makes complete sense when you consider the power you’re giving your children for the future; being able to manage eating sweets and keep sweet treats in proportion to other foods they eat is a fantastic life skill going forward.
If you’d like to find out more about feeding your children with love and good sense, I highly recommend Ellyn Satter’s Completely Revised and Updated Child of Mine from the year 2000. It’s a heavy volume, but it’s full of incredible advice that will empower you to feed your children with a lot less stress!