10 Healthy Halloween Snacks

Pixland/ThinkstockBy DIANE HENDERIKS, Good Morning America Health Contributor

(NEW YORK) -- A snack or two a day can help keep the weight away. Whether you want to lose weight or just eat healthier, adding a couple of snacks each day is a smart habit to get into.

In a perfect nutrition world, we'd all make fresh homemade snacks every day but life is not perfect and we get so busy that prepackaged snacks can be a convenient, healthy addition to your diet. Look for wholesome snacks that will keep you satisfied and are around 200 calories or less. Choose those that have lean protein, fiber, complex carbohydrates and good quality fats with no artificial flavors or sweeteners, all natural components, and stay away from nutritionally void sugary snacks like candy and soda.

You should never get to the point where you are famished so prepackaged snacks can really help stave off hunger and keep the metabolism going when away from home. An interesting outcome of this piece is that as an added and unexpected bonus these are all gluten-free. 

Stonyfield Farm Oikos 0% Organic Greek Yogurt Super Fruits
This yogurt is amazingly guilt-free and good for you. Stonyfield Organic 0% Oikos is made with organic non fat milk and has about twice the protein of regular yogurt, a nice calcium boost and just 130 calories. It's made without the use of toxic persistent pesticides, antibiotics and artificial hormones. Acai, pomegranate and raspberries are the three superfruits found in this delicious, satisfying and creamy treat.

NuGo Dark Mint Chocolate Chip Bar
The NuGo Dark Mint Chocolate Chip Bar is like a delicious and healthy version of a thin mint cookie. Each bar and has 200 calories, 10 grams of protein, is non-dairy, gluten free, vegan and all natural. What's cool is that it's the only protein bar company that uses real, antioxidant rich dark chocolate. They have a huge assortment of bars that are all delicious.

Simply Snackin' Dried Chicken Breast with Mangos & Papayas
This is most certainly not your conventional jerky -- it's moist, lean, savory dried chicken breast with flavorful mangos and papayas. It contains all-natural ingredients, nothing artificial and no added MSG. This is an excellent grab-n-go high protein, low calorie snack with only 60 calories per satisfying package. Simply Snackin offers a variety of dried chicken and beef sirloin snacks that contain flavorful mangos, berries, papayas, cherries and other artisan ingredients and four of the six flavors are gluten-free.

Ginny Bakes Love & Nuts
This chewy and flavorful fruit and nut bar is made with sunflower and pumpkin seeds, almonds, walnuts, raisins, cranberries, Medjool dates and pistachios. It's organic, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, kosher and is a super satisfying snack with 4 grams of fiber, 5 grams of protein and 200 calories.

Mediterranean Snacks Rosemary & Cracked Pepper Baked Lentil Chips

These baked lentil chips are delicious, all-natural, gluten-free, crunchy and have only 110 calories in a 22 chip serving. They will satisfy your chip munchie craving and come in other great flavors like Sea Salt, Roasted Pepper, Parmesan Garlic and Cucumber Dill. My kids love them and they are such a refreshing change from the average chip.

Mini BabyBel Light

Mini Babybel Light is family friendly treat with just 50 calories and 6 grams of protein each. Pair one of these delicious, creamy wheels with some veggies and a few healthy crackers and you've got yourself a great snack. I throw them in my kids lunch boxes and they love opening the red wax to reveal the cheese and the wax actually seals in flavor and nutrition.

Lucy's Brownie Cakes

Just one of these rich, decadent bite-sized chocolate brownies will healthfully satisfy your chocolate craving with just 120 calories, zero grams cholesterol and zero grams trans fat. They are also gluten-free, vegan, kosher and made from organic, non-GMO ingredients.

California Almonds

A handful of almonds (about 23) provides an ideal combination of protein, fiber and heart-healthy unsaturated fats to combat between-meal energy highs and lows and sustain satiety. One serving of almonds (28g) delivers 6 grams of power-packed protein and has 13 grams of unsaturated fat, with only 1 gram of saturated fat. When compared ounce for ounce, almonds are the tree nut highest in protein, fiber, calcium, vitamin E, riboflavin, and niacin.

Popcorn, Indiana's Sea Salt Popcorn

For popcorn lovers like me, this is happiness in a bag. Popcorn, Indiana is an all-natural, gluten-free, whole grain snack made from just three ingredients; farm fresh corn, canola oil and a light sprinkling of gourmet sea salt. Each serving has just 130 calories, 3 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber. They offer a wide assortment of popcorn flavors including White Cheddar, Movie Theater, Smoked Cheddar, Wasabi and various Kettle corn flavors.

Stretch Island Fruit Company Autumn Apple Fruit Strips

We are talking the whole fruit and nothing but the fruit here. Every one of these strips is 100% natural, made from real fruit puree, has no added sugar or artificial additives, provides ½ serving of fruit and is just 45 calories. They come in a variety of flavors that both kids and adults love.

Diane Henderiks is a registered dietitian, the founder of Dianehenderiks.com and a Good Morning America health contributor.Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Report: Kids Face Highest Risk of Being Hit by Car on Halloween

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- If your community hasn't postponed Halloween activities, there's good reason to be extra careful out there Wednesday night.  

A State Farm review of statistics finds children face the highest risk of being fatally struck by a car on this holiday than any other day of the year.  The chances of getting hit are more than twice as high as on an average day.

Researchers also pinpointed the most dangerous hour: between 6 and 7 p.m., the time day turns to night.  

More than 70 percent of accidents happened in the middle of the block, underlining the importance of crossing only at crosswalks.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Superstorm Sandy Tests Hospital Preparedness

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- When superstorm Sandy slammed into New York and New Jersey, it tested the emergency preparedness of hospitals housing some of the region's most vulnerable residents.

Despite all the hospitals' preparations, the storm's high winds and flooding forced a handful of hospitals in New York and New Jersey to evacuate all patients, including those that were in critical condition.

In New York City, NYU Langone Medical Center was forced to evacuate 300 patients after losing power in the historic storm. Among the evacuees were roughly 45 critical care patients and 20 babies, who were carefully carried down dark stairways as the 18-story hospital's elevators stood still.

A long line of ambulances lit up the dark streets surrounding the midtown Manhattan medical center, which spans four blocks along the East River, waiting to transport patients to other facilities amid gusts of wind that topped 70 miles per hour.

News of the "total evacuation" came roughly 12 hours after hospital officials said Monday morning that their emergency preparedness plan had been activated and that there were "no plans to evacuate" at the time.

But Sandy spawned record-breaking tides around lower Manhattan when it made landfall as a post-tropical storm just south of Atlantic City. The flooding prompted power outages from East 39th Street to the lower tip of Manhattan.

NYU Langone Medical Center is located at East 33rd Street on 1st Avenue. The 50-year-old building sits at sea level atop an extended bulkhead in Kip's Bay.

The hospital had at least two backup generators: one in the basement and one on the roof, according to a spokeswoman. But basement flooding caused one generator to fail, and cut off the fuel supply to the other.

"We've had significant challenges at many of our hospitals and health care facilities," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in a press conference, adding that the city health department is sending people to hospitals and chronic care facilities in the worst flood zones.

Bellevue Hospital also lost power Monday night after its back-up electricity generators failed, but Bellevue was able to get its power back up and running, Bloomberg said.

Bellevue has since completed a "partial evacuation," according to city health department spokeswoman Jean Weinberg.

Coney Island Hospital was also evacuated Tuesday, adding to the list of hospitals already emptied of patients ahead of the storm.

Not far away from New York City, Hackensack University Medical Center started receiving patients from Palisades Medical Center, whose back-up generator also failed, at 6 a.m. Although the Palisades generator was restored, conditions were too unstable to restore uninterrupted power, hospital spokeswoman Nancy Radner said. The National Guard was on hand to help transport patients.

"They were struck a bad blow, and they really needed help," said Dr. Joseph Feldman, chairman of emergency services at Hackensack University Medical Center. "So today we've taken about 23 patients already, and I see another caravan of patients are arriving in our ambulance bay."

Patients arrived with nurses from Palisades and packets of information about their medication and other health needs, he said.

"We have more than enough information to work with," Feldman said.

Hackensack is expecting 10 patients on a ventilator or in critical condition, Radner said.

"To transport even one patient in critical condition, who may be on a ventilator with multiple IV drips running on electric pumps, is a major endeavor often requiring three or more medical professionals," said Dr. Jennifer Ashton, Senior Medical Contributor to ABC News.

Although the patients have been successfully relocated, the NYU Langone website, email and phone lines remain down Tuesday.

"It surprises me that NYU could be knocked out by water in the basement," said ABC News chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser. "You expect that, with a flood, water will go to the basement, so you can't put all your backup power there."

All accredited U.S. hospitals are required to have backup generators in the event of a power failure, according to Ron Dziedzicki chief support service officer for UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio.

"We have 17 generators and four fuel tanks…The maximum amount of time we've run on generators is 72 hours without a refuel," said Dziedzicki, describing how the generators are raised to prevent flooding from nearby Lake Erie and dispersed across the 35-acre campus.

As Sandy moved inland, Dziedzicki braced for possible power outages. But he said he's prepared, thanks to monthly maintenance checks.

"You never know when weather's going to come," he said, describing the regular drill of switching over to backup power for an hour and keeping diesel fuel tanks topped up. If an outage were to outlast the stored fuel, UH Case Medical Center has a "memorandum of understanding" with a fuel supplier.

But even if the backup generators are working properly, the switch over can cause a 10-second lapse in power to lifesaving equipment like ventilators and bypass machines, according to Dziedzicki. At UH Case Medical Center, they have it down to five seconds, he added.

It's unclear whether NYU had additional generators and fuel storage tanks that were unable to meet the hospital's energy needs, which vary with the number of patients and the type of care they need. The hospital discharged roughly 600 patients Friday to "reduce [the] patient load," according to a spokeswoman. But Monday night's emergency evacuation has raised questions about the hospital's emergency planning.

"You never want to be in a situation like NYU faced last night where you have to evacuate during a storm," Besser said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Study: Forgiveness Can Have Drawbacks

Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Self-help books often sing praises for the act of forgiveness, but new research finds it might be better to withhold your forgiveness sometimes.

It's supposed to be a good thing. Forgiveness can often set you free of anger and angst. But new research from a team at Florida State University suggests forgiveness might have a dark side because it can encourage the person you forgave to do it again.  

Researchers found that when spouses forgave their partners immediately, the partner was six and a half times more likely to repeat the bad behavior the next day.  They also found that people who were forced to forgive more often were less happy.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Mystery Illness Sickens Hundreds Along US-Mexico Border

Comstock/Thinkstock(EL PASO, Texas) -- Approximately 200 people have become sick near the U.S.-Mexico border, northwest of El Paso, Texas, and a mandatory evacuation has been ordered for two miles around an industrial park there.

Firefighters say some kind of hazardous material has been released causing light-headedness and nausea.

A communications system has now been activated telling people to stay indoors.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


How to Help Hurricane Sandy Victims

Matthew Fiasconaro/ABC News(NEW YORK) -- If you aren't able to personally provide shelter and supplies to those affected by Hurricane Sandy, it doesn't mean you can't help at all. There are many organizations along the East Coast that are providing shelter, food and other supplies to hurricane victims.

One way to help is by donating to the Red Cross. All donations will provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance to those affected by Hurricane Sandy. To donate, visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

Nearly 100 Red Cross blood drives were cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy so blood supplies are low in the areas affected the most. The Red Cross asks that those able to donate, schedule an appointment to give blood. The New York Blood Center is urging people to donate blood for those in the New York/New Jersey area. To donate, call 1-800-933-2566 or visit www.nybloodcenter.org.

The Salvation Army has dozens of mobile feeding units and shelters along the East Coast that are working to serve thousands in the most heavily hit areas. Visit www.salvationarmyusa.org to donate.

Feeding America has thousands of pounds of emergency food, water and supplies in the disaster zone that they are working to distribute to hurricane victims. To donate, visit www.feedingamerica.org or call 1-800-910-5524.

AmeriCares is providing medicine and other supplies to people impacted by Hurricane Sandy. To donate, visit www.americares.org.

World Vision is distributing flood clean-up kits, personal hygiene items and emergency food kits to people hit by the hurricane. To donate, visit www.worldvision.org.

Save the Children is working to provide relief to families and their children affected by Hurricane Sandy. Visit www.savethechildren.org to donate.

Samaritan's Purse is asking for volunteers to help with the response to Hurricane Sandy victims. To volunteer, visit their website.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Baby Delivered in NJ Hospital Truck during Hurricane Sandy

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- During Hurricane Sandy’s high winds and heavy rain, a New Jersey woman gave birth to a baby boy in a hospital’s make-shift medical shelter to aid residents immobilized by flooding.

Christine Schleppy, 34, was only 35 weeks into her pregnancy when she started having contractions on Monday near the height of the storm. When they became more frequent around 6 p.m., her husband called 911 and an ambulance arrived.

“You hope you can get to the hospital,” David Schleppy, 38, said. “We knew there were many trees down and roads getting closed left and right.”

Their home in Skillman, N.J., was not in an evacuation zone, but the EMTs struggled to drive the Schleppy family to a hospital in Princeton amid flooding, debris and road closures. Ultimately, the ambulance became stuck in the mud, so the parents-to-be were switched to the fire ambulance that was leading the way.

Despite having five children between the two of them, it was an anxiety-ridden experience for the couple.

“It was definitely stressful,” he said.

The fire department’s SUV finally made its way to Hackensack University Medical Center’s Mobile Satellite Emergency Department shelter in Hillsborough. It was one of seven mobile units deployed by the hospital to low-lying areas.

Christine had three children with epidural medicine previously, but this was her first natural birth. A spokeswoman for Hackensack University Medical Center said the hospital does have a mobile unit that is an operating room, but the other units do not have epidural medicine.

“She wasn’t happy about it but ultimately the main concern was to have a healthy baby,” David said about his wife.

Due to high winds, the doctor and staff in the mobile unit had set up shelter in the gymnasium of a church next door.

Dr. Herman Morchel and the MSED team finally delivered Liam Alexander Schleppy, 5 lbs., 2 oz., at 11 P.M. on Monday in Hillsborough.

They have since been transported to Somerset Hospital and are doing well, David said.

Hackensack University Medical Center Chairman of Emergency Medicine, Dr. Joseph Feldman, said it was a good thing that county officials requested the mobile units be deployed in areas hit hardest by Hurricane Irene last year.

“It was lucky because who knows who would have delivered this woman’s baby if our team was not set up there,” Feldman said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Food Essentials for Surviving a Storm

GNL Media/Digital Vision(NEW YORK) -- With millions of people along the East Coast out of power, and even more expected to lose it, getting power back after a serious storm can sometimes take more than a few days. 

ABC News talked to food safety expert Katie Burns to find out what families have on-hand and what they need to do during the coming week.  Burns recommends planning ahead for at least three days or more.

For more food safety and emergency resources from the International Food Information Council Foundation, visit their website.

1.  Get plenty of bottled water.  You need at least a gallon of water per person per day.

2.  Make sure you have an old-fashioned, non-electric, can opener.

3.  Load up on canned or pouched food.  At least two cans per person per day. Soup is okay because gas stove-tops will still work with matches.

4.  Don’t forget about your grill.  Outdoor gas grills can even be used to boil water.

5.  Keep non-perishables on hand.  Foods like peanut butter, granola bars and dried fruit last long and work as snacks.  Also, fruits like banana and apples are good options, too.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Backup Generator Fails; NYU Medical Center Evacuated

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Paramedics and other medical workers began to evacuate patients from New York University Langone Medical Center due to a power outage caused by Tropical Storm Sandy, followed by a failure of backup generators at the hospital, New York City officials said Monday night.

About 200 patients, roughly 45 of whom are critical care patients, were moved out of NYU via private ambulance with the assistance of the New York Fire Department, city officials said. ABC News' Chris Murphey reported a long line of ambulances outside of NYU Langone waiting to transport patients to other hospitals in the city.

The hospital had a total of 800 patients two days ago, some patients were discharged before Monday night's evacuation, which was described by emergency management officials as "a total evacuation."

According to ABC's Josh Haskell, 24 ambulances lined the street, waiting to be waved in to pick up patients from NYU Lagone Medical Center. "Every four minutes a patient comes out and an empty ambulance pulls up. The lobby of the Medical Center is full of hospital personnel, family members, and patients," Haskell reports.

The patients were moved to a number of area hospitals and according to officials at NYU, the receiving hospitals would notify family members.

Sloan Kettering Hospital spokesman Chris Hickey confirmed to ABC News' Gitika Ahuja that it is receiving 26 adult patients from NYU, at their request. Hickey said she didn't know whether they had been admitted yet or what their conditions were.

NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital spokesman Wade Bryan Dotson said it is also accepting patients from NYU at both campuses, Columbia and Weill Cornell.

Meanwhile, ABC News affiliate WABC captured footage of patients being evacuated; among the first patients brought out of the hospital on gurneys was a mother and her newborn child.

On Monday morning, NYU Langone Medical Center had issued a press release that indicated the hospital's emergency preparedness plan had been activated and that there were "no plans to evacuate" at the time.

Shortly after the reports of an evacuation at NYU Langone, city officials reported that a second major New York City hospital, Bellevue Hospital, was about to lose backup power due to a generator failure.

Requests for more information from NYU Langone Medical Center spokespeople were not immediately returned.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Hurricane Sandy: Tips To Make Tap Water Safe for Drinking

BananaStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- If water supply becomes contaminated, you can either boil water for one minute or make water safe with bleach.

Here is how:

If tap water is clear:

1. Add eight drops of household unscented liquid bleach to one gallon of water.

2. Mix well and wait 30 minutes or more before drinking.

If tap water is cloudy:

1. Add 16 drops of unscented household liquid bleach to one gallon of water.

2. Mix well and wait 30 minutes or more before drinking.

In addition:

  • Never mix bleach with ammonia or other cleaners.
  • Open windows and doors to get fresh air when you use bleach.

For more information, go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio