K.C. asks from Plano, TX on January 23, 2008
Okay, My husband calls me the candy Nazi so I am just trying to find out if I am being too strict or not. He thinks it is okay to give our 4yo one or two pieces of candy every night after eating his dinner. I don't. I would prefer that my son learn to eat his meals without constantly dangling a piece of candy in front of him. I would much rather he be allowed to eat a few pieces as a special treat once in a while rather than one everyday. I am not anti-candy, I just don't want candy to be a habit. How do you handle sweet treats in your home?
E.D. answers from Dallas on January 23, 2008
I agree with you 100%. The only time I brought out candy was when we were doing 5+ breathing treatments in a day. That is hard on a baby. Then, I'd give him "one m&m of every color (6)... that sounded so much MORE than "here's a few".
We are not anti-candy either. But, we don't keep it in our house... It's a TREAT! Like for Easter, Halloween and an occassional... "mama needs chocolate, so I'll share a piece with you" treat... lol
A.H. answers from Dallas on January 23, 2008
Of my four kids, I have one that candy makes a little too crazy for him to get near bedtime (after dinner would be too close to bedtime). But I do indulge my kids. I use it as a reward from time to time as well. Every night? no, but they probably get candy as a treat 3-4 times a week.
None of my kiddos have weight issues and they all are pretty normal. I just have to watch the time when I let them have it because my one son gets hyper.
S.B. answers from Seattle on January 23, 2008
You have to find a balance, which it sounds like you are trying to do. IMO, candy on a dialy basis is too much. Now, I have a HUGE sweet tooth...I could eat cake for dinner and be happy with that. BUT, I don't...because I don't want my kids to do that. We eat a healthy dinner and on the nights we do have a dessert, the girls have to eat their dinner first...and I'm not talkin eat a bite and then fill up on candy. I don't even usually tell them we are having dessert until dinner is over. And, we don't do dessert every night.
I believe our food should be functional AND delicious!! Maybe give him cheese sauce with his veggies as a treat. Sometimes I give the girls strawberries or grapes as a "dessert". It doesn't always have to be candy.
Its all about moderation...we get sweet treats sometimes...sometimes just for the fun of it, sometimes we get ice cream when Grandpa visits, sometimes its for a reward, but its not all the time and its always a treat. My girls (ages 4 and 2) don't ask for candy and they certainly don't expect it...but they love it when we give it to them!
Good luck...sounds like your battle is more with your husband than your son!
R. answers from San Antonio on January 23, 2008
I have to say I agree with you all the way. I always serve my kids some kind of after dinner-pre bedtime snack, but it varies from a cookie to fruit or yogurt and sometimes ice-cream or pop-corn but it never is tied to eating dinner.
N. answers from Dallas on January 24, 2008
First, I try to never give candy as a reward for anything if I can help it. Second, I must admit that my kids probably do get at least one small piece of candy per day or several times a week. The reason for this, however, is because we don't let them have an over abundance of candy at one sitting and it just turns out that the candy they get at certain times of the year lasts a long time. For instance, I usually have to throw out MOST of their Halloween candy because the next year, there's still a bunch left. The same with any candy they get in their stocking at Christmas. Traditionally, my kids get the gold chocolate coins in their stockings at Christmas in addition to a few other candy items. I only let them have a couple at most in a day so the candy tends to last a long time in our house. I feel it's ok to limit candy intake like that. It lasts longer and they like getting to have a little treat at some point each day. Sometimes they don't even ask for any of their candy, but when they do, they know they can only have one or two pieces in a day. Reading some of the other mom's responses, it seems I'm in the minority, but I have a childhood friend who has always loved candy. She has always eaten candy in moderation, but she does have a little pretty much every day. She's svelte, healthy, happy and doesn't have a mouth full of cavities as you might think she would. Unlike some people, she can limit herself to a small portion rather than buying a big candy bar or eating a lot at one sitting. I'm different. I was the kind who ate most of my candy very quickly when I was a kid, and now I get cravings for sweets every now and then and eat too much at one sitting when I do. I guess it's different for different people. I don't think a piece or two of candy each day is bad myself. But NEVER as a reward. I try very hard to never use food to reward "good" behavior.
B.P. answers from Houston on January 23, 2008
We do not eat sweets on a regular basis. If we want ice cream, we go out to get it. It is a TREAT - a family excursion to the ice cream place of someone's choice. It always varies. My babies all the way to the teens do not even ask for ccandy on a regular basis. Sometimes we will just go to the store and buy some. It is always a treat - after a big test, a lot of icky chores. Just for fun. Not every day but always well received and much appreciated. hth
A.V. answers from Beaumont on January 23, 2008
I don't believe in giving them candy everyday for eating their meals. But I do have different types of snacks that my kids get to pick out of after they eat all their supper. So they eat and then they can go dig in the box and pick out something to have has a snack/desert. I have different things like, gotarts, yogos, cheese crackers, gold fish, etc. or they can have a yogurt or pudding out of the icebox.
T.O. answers from Dallas on January 23, 2008
I'd say be the candy Nazi! You can't regret NOT giving them candy. Trust me.
When mine were young I did not keep them from sweets or even monitor their intake... I just let them have what fell their way and Holy Cow what a lot of candy falls across a kids lap in a day!
It got worse when they got to elementary school with the class treats and over-indulging parents. At middle school they figured out how to use a snack machine and buy treats without me knowing it while at school. By high-school, well let's just say one of mine has a mouthful of cavaties and another one has a huge sweet tooth and the other one is really picky about what he'll eat.
So keep the candy away!
My pastor said something about the ratio of 90/10 being a Biblical principal and that in the Bible you could find reference to it, about being in moderation and tithing etc .... so what about doing 9 out of 10 days, no candy? On the 10th day you get treats and then you start the 9 days without again.