How can I enjoy Halloween during pregnancy?
It's Halloween time, and being pregnant does not mean you have to miss out on the festivities! Having candy at Halloween is no different from having candy at any other time of the year during pregnancy. The holiday is not what makes the candy special, it is the ritual we go through to get the candy; unfortunately, that ritual does not change the candy’s nutritional content.
When should you avoid candy during pregnancy?
If you have gestational diabetes, it is best to avoid the sugary snacks altogether. If you do not have gestational diabetes, it is generally okay to have a piece or two of Halloween candy while you enjoy the festivities. The key here is moderation. The thing to keep in mind is that candy contains empty calories; if it's chocolate, it contains caffeine.
Watch out for anything you are allergic to, such as nuts. If you are allergic to it, avoid it. Also, read the candy labels and watch out for artificial sweeteners. Aspartame and acesulfame-potassium are controversial with regards to their safety during pregnancy, and saccharin or cyclamates need to be avoided altogether. Sucralose, which is the artificial sweetener in Splenda, is currently considered safe.
Can sugar consumption affect your baby's health?
What you do not want to do is binge on candy. Doing this not only increases your blood sugar, but it also increases your baby’s blood sugar. You will likely notice your baby doing somersaults after you have a snack. Some other things to remember are that your diet may influence your child’s taste preferences after they are born. Make sure your diet is full of a variety of flavorful and healthy foods. It should be the kind of diet that will be healthy for your child once he or she is eating real food.
Make healthy food choices on a general basis and don't stress about eating a piece or two of candy. Just remember to enjoy all things in moderation. Try taking a walk to burn off the extra calories from the sugar and enjoy the fall foliage; you and your growing little one will be just fine. Happy Halloween!