Beyond the fun decorations, creative costumes, and pumpkin carving, Halloween is synonymous with candy- and lots of it. If you’re planning on taking your kids Trick or Treating, or simply buying candy for the kids in your neighborhood, chances are, you may want to treat yourself too. Before you indulge, here are a few of the best and worst options when it comes to your sweets.
The Best Options:
1. A lollipop: Lollipops are great because you can savor them slowly while you walk with your kids from door to door. Instead of feeling deprived while you watch kids trick or treating, eating candy after candy, your lollipop will last you at least a few blocks, and will only set you back about 20 calories for the small one. Be mindful, though. They are still all sugar (about 5g per lollipop).
2. Dark Chocolate: No secret here, but dark chocolate is your safest bet when it comes to the chocolate front. It is full of antioxidants, extremely satisfying, and generally has less sugar than milk chocolate or white chocolate. Be mindful to stick to a small (approximately 1oz) portion though.
3. Sucking Candies or Smarties: A similar idea to the lollipop, sucking candies will last a lot longer than eating a small piece of chocolate or other candy. While they are entirely sugar, they are also only about 20 calories, though if you’re someone who prefers to chew their candy, a pack of Smarties will only set you back 25 calories. That’s only about an extra 5 minutes of vigorous work on the elliptical.
The Worst Options:
1. Milky Way: Sorry to all of the caramel lovers out there. Milky Way bars are dangerous, not only because of their high calorie and saturated fat counts, but also because that caramel gets stuck in your teeth very easily, making it a deadly choice for cavities. Your kids, too, would be better off without these. Each fun-size bar has 75 calories and 10 grams of sugar. That’s a good 20 minutes of vigorous walking.
2. Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups: I’ll be the first to admit that chocolate and peanut butter is a winning (or deadly) combination for me. Don’t trick yourself into this treat by telling yourself that the 5 grams of fat are healthy fat from peanuts. Skip this 88 calorie treat, and make these instead the next time you want that nutty/chocolate mix.
3. Twizzlers: Believe it or not, Twizzlers are a pretty scary treat in the sugar and calorie department. A 4-rope serving of Twizzlers will set you back a whopping 150 calories and 21 grams of sugar. The package may say ‘fat free,’ but that doesn’t mean they’re escaping the naughty list. You’d have to jog for 15 minutes to burn off those 4 Twizzlers. Definitely not worth it.
For more info on candy do’s and don’ts, check out my latest contribution to Redbook Magazine.