9 Ways to Make Halloween Less Candy-Centered

For people with Type 1 diabetes, enjoying Halloween while keeping blood sugar levels in check can be daunting. Yes, it’s absolutely true that people with Type 1 can “eat anything”, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s healthy to eat large-quantities-of-Fun-Size-Kit-Kats-anything.

Candy is a big part of Halloween, but it’s not the only part. According to an Atlantic report, trick-or-treating wasn’t even a national tradition until the late 1940’s; that means candy is the newcomer to Halloween. By some estimates, the Halloween tradition has been around for over 2,000 years, long enough for plenty of other traditions to take root.

Here are 10 ways to get into the Halloween spirit while still being mindful of your A1C score:

1. Corn Mazes

Nothing says fall like getting lost inside a corn maze, and many mazes now also have haunted nights. Going to corn mazes is a great way to have a blast while supporting local farmsteads – just make sure that you pack extra insulin and snacks; some of these mazes are harder than they look!

2. Local Festivals

From haunted fairs to library readings of spooky stories, check for local activities put on by your community.

3. Haunted Houses

Often, local schools, clubs, and charities will put on haunted houses as fundraisers and donate the proceeds, so you can feel good about feeling scared! Watch out, though – some are extremely scary – and that fright can actually raise your blood sugar levels as much as a treat.

4. Get Crafty

From paper witch hats to pumpkin lanterns, Halloween is one of the best holidays to showcase how crafty you can be. Take those decorations to make a haunted house that will be the envy of the block.

5. Pumpkin picking and carving

After you’ve selected the perfect pumpkin, make sure to carve it or paint it to truly get into the Halloween spirit.

6. Scary(ish) Movies

Whether you love Saw IV or It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!, Halloween has films for everyone to enjoy.

7. Haunted History

Spend an afternoon reading up on old local folklore and visiting ‘haunted’ places. But remember what happened to the Blair Witch camera crew and be careful.

8. Spooky Stories

Everyone’s got their favorite campfire story. Plan a spooky story night where everyone can bring their best thriller to the table.

9. Costumes

Costumes are a great chance to get creative. See who can make the best homemade disguise.

How do you make Halloween less candy-centered? Send your ideas to our editor at

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Kate Doughty is a third-year student at the University of Virginia, where she is studying English with an area concentration in literary prose.

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