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Have a Hoppy, Healthy Easter

Stacy Moretz, registered dietitian, Corporate and Community Health.

When you think of the Easter Bunny, chocolate bunnies, marshmallow treats and candy-filled eggs are often the first things that come to mind.  This year try to turn away from these sugar-filled treats and focus more on things to get kids outside and moving.  In the Triangle, it is supposed to be a beautiful weekend, and it is the perfect time to fill Easter baskets with fun games and toys to be enjoyed in the summer sun.

Ideas could include:

  • Frisbees
  • Beach toys (that trip to the beach is just weeks away now)
  • Swimming pool accessories
  • Bubbles
  • Roller skates
  • Kites
  • Croquet games
  • Gardening supplies

Spark creativity with:

  • Crayons, makers and paint
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • Play doh
  • Foam craft kits (can be purchased at Michaels)
  • Pipe cleaners, pom poms, sequins and glitter
  • Other craft or scrapbooking supplies

Stuff plastic eggs with:

  • Plastic animals
  • Coins
  • Stickers
  • Polly pocket accessories or miniature cars
  • Silly putty
  • Seed packets
  • Movie tickets or gift certificates

Of course, consuming a small chocolate bunny on Easter is certainly not going to hurt in the long run as part of an otherwise healthy diet.  Make sure children know that it is an occasional food, not an everyday food, and focus on portion control.  Other food items that are healthier choices than candy include fresh or dried fruits, sunflower or other seeds, low-sugar cereals or crackers, or nuts.  Choosing 100 calorie packs may also be a good choice because they are already portion controlled.  Finally, the hard boiled egg is a good, healthy food with only 70 calories per large egg.