With Halloween just days away and the festive season upon us, a few things are certain: extra joy, laughter, and, unfortunately, an overload of processed sugar. As colorful candies and sugary treats take center stage, it's crucial to help our children make healthier choices without curbing their holiday excitement. One way to add some natural sweetness to your holidays? Mariani Dates. Dates are truly Mother Nature's candy – their natural sweetness makes them an excellent substitute in desserts, snacks, and even savory dishes. They are also low-glycemic, so you're giving your child a burst of sweet energy without the inevitable sugar crash. Win-win!
We recently checked in with Ali Rosen, one of our go-to experts on feeding healthy families. Ali is a contributor to our #DatesAllDay campaign, as well as a mom, cookbook author, tv host, and writer. Here’s what she had to say about dates:
“There isn't really a snack more perfect for kids than dates, in my opinion. Unlike most fruit they can't get squished in a backpack; they have no sugar but they sure taste like a piece of candy; and they are filling. I'm constantly toting packs of dates in my purse and stroller. But then they are doubly important around the holidays because the only way to combat the desire for all things candy is to have something just as good at the ready."
We couldn’t agree more! Here are few other tips to ensure a naturally sweet holiday season:
1. Educate with Fun Facts: Children are more likely to make better choices when they understand the reasons. Use fun graphics or stories to explain the difference between natural and processed sugars.
2. Cook Together: Encourage your kids to join you in the kitchen. When they are part of the creative process, they appreciate the ingredients and the effort. Watch Ali make fun, delicious and nutritious Halloween-themed date energy balls with her adorable girls on her Instagram !
3. Date-Infused Treats: Use dates as a base for holiday treats. Think holiday-themed date balls with coconut, cocoa, and nuts, or use dates as a natural sweetener in pies and cookies. Jump on the date bark trend and share as hostess gifts throughout the holidays!
4. Control Portions: It’s the holidays, so occasional indulgence is okay! Just be mindful of portions. Smaller plates can help in reducing the quantity of sugary items kids consume.
5. Lead by Example: Kids emulate adults. If they see you choosing healthier options, they're more likely to follow suit.
The goal isn't to deprive but to make healthier choices accessible and appealing. Mariani Dates are not only delicious but also a nutritious way to keep the festive spirit alive and the processed sugar at bay!