Halloween Sweets: Taming the Treats

HALLOWEEN SWEETS

TAMING THE TREATS

October brings one of the sweetest holidays of the year, Halloween.  Even the slightest sweet tooth can make it challenging to maintain healthy choices as this candy  based season kicks off.  To help you and your family tame the treats and sweets of Halloween and strike a balance between indulgences and deprivation, think in terms of priorities and moderation.  The following tips target ways to blend fun and health.

 
HOW TO CURB SUGAR CRAVINGS
Whether you are going trick or treating or to a party, eat a nutritious, filling meal before heading out.  It is easier to make wise choices and consume less if you’re not over-hungry at the start of the evening.

REFRAME THE FOCUS; GIVE SWEETS THE OPTION
Rethink the purpose of Halloween.  Emphasize that the “fun” of festivities is about being together with friends and family. Deemphasize the focus on sweets as the sole purpose of this holiday. As an alternative to candy, give fun prizes to trick-or-treaters such as notepads, puzzles, bubbles, mini pumpkins, etc. 

BE CHOOSY WITH INDULGENCES
Think of candy and other indulgences as “sometimes” foods to be eaten occasionally, carefully selected, slowly savored and intentionally eaten rather than forbidden.  If it’s truly worth it, choose indulgences you enjoy but are also able to eat in moderation.
 
WHICH BARS TO BUY?
Do not purchase types of candy that may trigger out of control consumption.   Less preferred types may make it easier to eat fewer.  Choose the “fun” or “mini” sized types for easier portion control. 

HOW TO AVOID TEMPTATION 
“Out of sight, out of reach, out of mind” truly works.  Immediately after Halloween, gather excess candy and get rid of most or all of it.   Keep very few sweets; donate the rest to a charitable organization.
 
QUANTIFY YOUR SUGAR INTAKE 
The average American consumes 22 teaspoons, equal to 88 grams, of “added sugar” daily found in sweets and other foods that have sugar added during processing.  We recommend children consume less than 12 grams (3 teaspoons), women less than 20 grams (5 teaspoons) and men less than 28 grams (7 teaspoons) “added sugar” daily. Diabetics may benefit by consuming even lower quantities.  Be selective and precise about the type and portion of candy and other sweets you eat before, during and after Halloween.  Consult a qualified Registered Dietitian Nutritionist to determine your personal needs. 
 

WHAT’S IN YOUR CANDY?

SUGAR NUTRITION FACTS:

MOST OF THE CARBOHYDRATE IN CANDY IS STRAIGHT SUGAR.

12 grams sugar = 1 tablespoon sugar or 3 sugar cubes

4 grams sugar   = 1 teaspoon sugar or 1 sugar cube

Fun-Size Bars

3 Musketeers           
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Almond Joy               
10 grams / 2 ½ sugar cubes

Butterfinger               
16 grams / 4 sugar cubes

Kit Kat                
10 grams / 2 ½ sugar cubes

Milky Way               
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Reese's PB Cup           
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Snickers               
10 grams / 2 ½ sugar cubes

Twix                   
10 grams / 2 ½ sugar cubes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Candy By The Piece

M&Ms - Plain / 24 pieces
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Skittles / 12 pieces
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Starburst / 2 pieces
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Tootsie Roll / 2 midgees
12 grams / 3 sugar cubes

Mini-Size Bars

3 Musketeers
4 grams / 1 sugar cube

Almond Joy
8 grams/ 2 sugar cubes

Butterfinger
8 grams / 2 sugar cubes

Hershey's Miniatures
4 grams / 1 sugar cube

Kit Kat
6 grams / 1 ½ sugar cubes

Milky Way
6 grams / 1 ½ sugar cubes

Reese's PB Cup
4 grams / 1 sugar cube

Snickers
4 grams / 1 sugar cube

Twix
8 grams / 2 sugar cubes