Stocking up for Halloween this year? You might want to go easy on the candy. New research shows American children are becoming more health conscious – with more than half of the children surveyed claiming they are looking forward to something healthy this Halloween. A study of 2,000 6-12-year-olds and their parents examined their diets and relationship with food and found two-thirds of children said they would be happy to get a fruit pouch while trick or treating. Many parents are shocked by how responsible their kids are. Seventy-seven percent are surprised with their child’s ability to make healthy decisions, even during tempting occasions, like Halloween. During the one time of year when children are allowed and expected to overindulge on sweets, 63 percent of children say they would be delighted to receive a fruit while trick-or-treating or at a Halloween party. That might be why as many as 36 percent of the parents surveyed say they’re handing out some healthier snacks for Halloween this year. Sixty-seven of parents will be giving out treats this October, but about one in seven (13 percent) will not be giving out candy this year. And while there are occasions when kids will enjoy sweets, 83 percent of the parents surveyed said their kids have sometimes or regularly opted for a healthier to-go snack over a more indulgent snack. The results of the survey also revealed modern American children are more health-conscious than their parents in general. Nearly two-thirds 65 percent of moms and dads feel their child has a healthier diet than they do. In fact, eight in ten (79 percent) said their child will voluntarily choose fruit over sweets on occasion in the interest of their health. The research, which was commissioned by GoGo squeeZ, found kids are even doling out health advice to Mom and Dad. Four in ten (42 percent) have had their child criticize their own diet or food choices. That’s because the majority of parents (66%) confess they generally eat more unhealthy snacks, candy or treats than their children. And moms and dads will go to extreme lengths to get their fix - 57% of parents have a secret stash of unhealthy snacks and candy that they HIDE from their children. The younger generation is showing impressive levels of restraint - nearly half (45 percent) of parents reported that their child voluntarily sets their own limits on candy. And when given a choice, as many as 89 percent of the parents surveyed frequently had their child opt for a healthy snack over an unhealthy snack option. One in five (21 percent) kids has told their parents that they did not want to ruin their appetite, and a responsible 36 percent wanted to avoid getting any cavities. That could be why 83 percent of parents say they give their children more freedom to make snacking decisions than they were given as a child. A spokesperson for GoGo squeeZ said: “It’s natural to think that kids prefer candy and junk food, but with the emergence of so many snack options that are both tasty and healthy, we’ve found that flavor - not sugar - is what matters most.” “We frequently hold taste tests with kids, and time and time again, they ask for more flavors and new fruits. This is inspiring to see.” said Helene Caillate, Chief Marketing Officer for GoGo squeeZ. “So, news flash for parents wondering what ‘trick or treat’ to hand out this Halloween – that go-to candy jar might be getting stale. You’ll probably get some smiles if you’re handing out healthier snacks.”
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