October 22, 2015

Trick or treat: The best and worst Halloween candies

When it comes to Halloween treats, not all are created equal. While we haven’t discovered a candy that’s truly healthy (please, science, make this happen!), some choices are better than others. Scroll through the gallery below to see which Halloween candies your kids (and you) should limit this year.

Trick: Candy corn
Say it ain’t so! Candy Corn may be a Halloween favourite, but when it comes to health, this sugar-filled candy ranks among the worst. While a suggested serving size of 22 pieces will only add up to 140 calories, it’s hard to control your portions since this tasty treat doesn’t come pre-packaged (trust us!).

Treat: Life Savers (and other hard candies)
If you’re craving something sweet but don’t want to sabotage your waistline, Life Savers are a good choice. With just 45 calories for four pieces and zero grams of fat, these hard candies are a health-conscious option. And since it usually takes a while longer to eat a hard candy, you’re less likely to over-indulge. There’s also a sugar free option with just 30 calories per serving. Other hard candies, such as Jolly Ranchers, are also good choices.

Trick: Twix
Yikes! The amount of saturated fat in a Twix bar is enough to frighten anyone. A serving (3 pieces) of mini, Halloween-sized bars may only have 150 calories, but it packs seven grams of saturated fat – a whopping 20 per cent of an average person’s daily intake. A full-sized bar? That accounts for – gulp – 35 per cent of your daily saturated fat intake, and 18 per cent of your total fat. If you’re going to indulge in this cookie bar, do it sparingly!

Treat: M&M’s
As far as candy-coated chocolate goes, M&M’s are A-OK to indulge in (in moderation, of course!) A fun-size package will set you back about 90 calories and has nine grams of sugar – but if you go for peanut M&M’s, you’ll get a bit of protein. Go with the dark chocolate variation for antioxidizing benefits.

Trick: Skittles
Sure, you’ll taste the rainbow after digging into a pack of Skittles, but you’ll also experience a major sugar rush. A regular-sized package (original flavour) has 230 calories and 46 grams of fat – that’s the equivalent of 10 teaspoons!

Treat: Rockets
This Halloween classic has withstood the test of time – and for good reason! While these pastel pill-like candies are full of sugar, an entire roll isonly 30 calories. Even if you down a few, you’re still in good shape.

Trick: Twizzlers
These chewy twists may look harmless, but just four pieces has 21 grams of sugar, which canturn into fat.  If you’re craving a fruity choice, try looking for a dried fruit bar or candy.

Treat: Tootsie Pops
Like Life Savers, Tootsie Pops (or other lollipops) are good because it takes us longer to finish them, making it less likely for us to indulge in multiple ones.  With 60 calories per pop, you get the hard crunch of the candy shell and the yummy chew of the Tootsie Roll middle – and for less calories than a serving of mini Tootsie Rolls.

Trick: Nerds
Nerds might seem like a harmless candy choice, but just one serving of these sugar-filled treat has 14 grams of sugar and 60 calories. Doesn’t seem so bad, right? Well, until you find out that a serving size is only a tablespoon. Best to stay away from these little guys unless you’re really, really good at portion control.

Treat: Chocolate or yogurt-covered raisins
Ok, bear with us. We know kids aren’t (usually) lining up to get raisins for Halloween, but if your child likes them, they’re a great choice. Just ¼ cup of Sun-Maid raisins makes up a full serving of fruit. There’s also chocolate and yogurt-covered options, which add a little bit of sweetness to the nutritional value.

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