Readers’ Scoop: A Sweet New Year Taken To The Extreme

Let me cut to the chase. My children came home this Simchas Torah with I’d say a couple pounds of nosh. And I’m not talking about chips, pretzels and drinks. I’m talking about the nosh with those ingredients you can’t even pronounce, let alone to know what they are.

I understand you want to make it exciting for kids to come to Shul and celebrate with the Torah, but please, can’t there be a limit? How am I supposed to just sit back and watch my kids chump away at the most dangerous candies eating away at their health?

And the dentist bills? I don’t even want to think of what 6 mouths will cost me.

And it’s not like I can just sneak it away from them. After all, this was one of their highlights of the year.

This letter isn’t meant to take away a Minhag which has been around for many years, but I do hope that some consideration is given for next year.

May all merit a sweet year.

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  1. Sometimes you need to adjust YOURSELF to the reality. You won’t change everything with a letter to The Scoop! If this is the one time in the year that they have this junk, I don’t believe you need to lose sleep over it. Let your kids live a bit like kids,it will pay back with high dividends when they grow up.

  2. the thing is that there are thousands of kids around the world eating this stuff. i, myself, admit that i eat it too. it’s not gonna kill you if you have it just once in a while. if you’re asking people not to give kids this candy, then i think the question you really need to ask is “why do companies make candy with these unhealthy ingredients?” am i right or am i wrong?
    but it’s out there in the grocery stores and people can’t tell each other what to do. all we can do is try to be as healthy as we can possibly be. this candy is tempting cause when you shop it’s literally in front of your face and a customer is most likely to grab it off the shelf. it’s nice that you’re asking people not to give kids this candy, but the most important thing is to first think about your own life and how you’re living it.
    don’t let what other people do get to you because it’s how they live. and you live how you live. hope you had an enjoyable succos.

  3. my daughter, who probably eats a junk nosh once a month, came home with 4 pounds of nosh. I took away 3.99 pounds, gave her a loli and told her she could eat it because she was such a good girl. She appreciated it and was not mad at me because junk food is not part of her regular diet, its a rare occasional treat.

    Do you know what was shocking? At her 5 year checkup, her doctor took blood tests to check her cholesterol. I said, “what, checking a 5 year olds cholesterol?? He told me it is something new since more and more kids are obese and have high cholesterol. I was floored. He was more shocked when her results came back normal, which he told me is the exception these days.
    To all those who say ‘let kids be kids and eat nosh all day”, you are irresponsible and killing your kids.

  4. Maybe you all should not give the children nosh. You buy it and give it to the children, and when they get home, the parents throw it away. The stores make out but it is a waste of your money. Instead give the children something notorious, like an apple, orange, banana, etc. That will not be thrown away and is good for the children. Money well spent, not thrown away.

  5. As a Goy who has had exposure to dealing with Halloween and Easter, may I respectfully offer the following suggestions? 1. Before the holiday, sit the kids down and discuss with them about the sweets and let them know that when they get home each is going to have a container assigned to them to hold their sweets, and that they will be distributed daily over a period of time. Couch it in a positive way that makes it seem like you are finding a way to extend their enjoyment and make it last longer. My mother had six children to deal with in a time when Dental Insurance did not exist, and this is how she handled it. On the first night, we were allowed to dump our bag of treats, and we’d all sort and count our treats, and then trade- I for one hate Butterfinger and would get rid of them! This way we didn’t feel like it was being taken away immediately. Then into the containers they would go, and the treats would last a long time because Mom didn’t buy candy or snack type foods for us at all- it was the sixties.

    Now, the second plan- I myself am grappling with the upcoming day of little monsters knocking on my front door. Were I part of a community where there is recognition as you have in Lakewood, I would distribute fruit instead of candy. But I’m not, and there is a persistent fear of using unpackaged foods to poison or harm children. So I have decided that the best course is to find single serve prepackaged snacks that are not candy, like granola bars, the peanut butter crackers, etc. These items are sold in bulk at certain stores and the cost per child is on par with passing out chocolate. In this Kosher conscious time, many manufacturers make parve kosher snacks that are found in the supermarket and the big box stores like Sam’s and Costco.

    Of course if your child is diabetic then all bets are off for both kinds of snacks, but you can make them up a “special” basket of treats appropriate to them. Even though we are all adults now, I make up gourmet chocolate baskets for my family at Easter. I don’t need chocolate or sweets since I’m fat enough already. My sweet sister started a tradition of making me up a basket of spa like items every year, things to groom myself with a little extra luxury in lieu of the chocolate. I love it and I don’t feel left out. A child would feel the same, and it is about inclusion- they dont’ want to feel left out either.
    For what it’s worth………….

  6. TO number 10 great ideas.
    One thing there are children allergic to
    granola and any sort of peanuts I wouldn’t distribute those. Many families eat different hecshers there fore what my family members do is trade in the hecsher and give away the others. Also they send it to school parties. Or keep it for Oneg Shabbos gatherings.
    This is a healthy discussion

  7. Its my one time a year that I eat nosh! We don’t buy it in our home but my hubby brings me some candy on simchas torah and I love it! Its all about moderation 🙂

  8. Learn to parent without modifying the world around to suit your needs. Learn that the world has a billion outside influences and you can’t write a letter about them all and expect everytime to get your way. Instead learn to accept that schools and other families very often find certain practices ‘OK’ that you don’t agree with. That doesn’t make you a better mom just because you are more strict, nor ford that make other parents who are slightly more lax bad parents. So stop thinking your ideas should be announced. Live your life the way you wish without blogging requests to amend the word over candy. (personally it’s parents like you who enact such strict guidelines and complain so much that place kids at risk to go askew)

  9. My wife offers my kids to trade in their nosh for a toy. Yes, it will cost us a couple of dollars at Toy Traders, but hey, I’d rather spend the money on toys than at the dentist. As for the nosh…we hide it and use it for Shabbos nosh for a the next couple of weeks and we dump some of it.

  10. I have done a deal with my child either with money or with a toy present. They trade in their bags of nash to us and we buy them in exchange a toy or a give them some money they can put into their bank account.

  11. You know, sugar isn’t what causes your teeth to get cavities. It’s the bacteria that live on your teeth that eat the particles of food left on them, and when they’re done, they excrete wastes (like all living things) which are acidic that eat through the enamel of your teeth, and THAT is what causes cavities.

    So, if you want to PREVENT cavities, the secret isn’t to stop eating sugar, the secret is to brush your teeth, use mouthwash, and floss. A little extra time spent on dental hygeine will save you thousands of dollars at the dentist in the long run 😉

    To #10, that is a brilliant suggestion! I absolutely love it! I’m definitely going to be using it when I have kids, thank you! ^^

  12. To Just Wondering,

    Thanks for reminding me about the peanut allergies. Sam’s has a variety pack of those cracker snacks for kids, some have PB, some have cheese, etc. I think what I’ll do is get them and when the trick or treaters come, offer them a choice. Or I guess I can get those assorted snack size boxes of 50 Frito Lay products. I know there are kids who have Celiac disease and Crohn’s disease, it’s hard to accommodate every one, but I’ll give it a shot- again, thanks for the heads up.

    To Mr. Conservative- well spoken. I wish more people thought like you, or at least would choose their battles wisely.

  13. Confiscating the nosh can cause eating issues when they get a little older. Some kids who were very deprived of nosh end up sneaking or stealing and craving and overeating sweets. Trading the nosh for a toy seems like a better idea. But personally I let the kids have their nosh because I don’t want to make food into an issue. In spite of my laid back approach , or maybe because of it, my kids actually prefer “real” foods to sweets. Moderation is key and so is talking with your kids about good food choices.

  14. she is 100 percent right dont use children as junk machines to stuff them up with sugar which causes all types of medical conditions like diabetes it also teaches them a lack of control that you could stuff yoursekf with 10 pounds od dangerous sugar for all you people who are to busy with your wifis lexus blacberrys etc etc get in touch with realty you are resposible for your childrens physical wellbeing

  15. I’m surprised that no one mentioned the Middos issue here. I see children diving between the feet of Rabbonim and Zekeinim in order to grab another piece of candy to add to their bulging pockets. And I find the Ruach is displaced by the focus on sweets.

    Moreover, why do we have so many Candymen? Let the Shul designate a single person to distribute nosh.

    I saw a father give his child a shopping bag full of candy to give out to the other kids. It looked so wrong.

  16. walk the middle path your kid is not going to die from simchas torah candy after all we are all still here!!! Besides I remember a letter written by a lakewood morah to all those healthy moms that they should see just how desparate their children become that they’ll eat someone’s filthy lollypops or other nosh off the floor !!!!! No extreme is good. Walk the middle path!!!

  17. I thought it was pretty excessive also. A few treats would be enough, but before these kids had time to finish one treat, another one was already offered. I was quite annoyed and felt that most of the dancing fell to the wayside- the little children were NOT the only ones eating the junk! I unfortunately saw way too many adults run over the grab stuff as well. The focus of being in shul became a nosh-fest instead of an uplifting experience as it usually is. Sad.

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