This is a blog all about health and fitness. With that said, there are times when health and fitness honestly just don’t make sense. There, I said it. So many nutrition experts and fitness gurus want to tell you to just forego all the garbage available to eat out there, but let’s face it, it’s Halloween. While yes, you shouldn’t eat the sugary junk that’s going to be bombarding you for the next few weeks (if it hasn’t been already?) I realize that life is meant to be enjoyed, and that occasions such as Halloween are great excuses to partake in a little sugary debauchery!
3 Quick Tips
So now that we’ve covered the fact that we’re all human, how can we minimize the damage that we’re doing to our bodies when consuming the Halloween haul? With some candy coming in at a whopping 280 calories, 14 grams of fat and 30 grams of sugar, let’s start with the obvious:
Tip #1 is go small – fun size or bite size is your friend. Caveat – eating 9 fun size bars is NOT better than eating a single full size bar – got it?
Tip #2 is limit your consumption. Limit yourself to 1 or 2 fun size bars per day and you’re likely gonna be just fine.
Tip #3 do the research. Look into just how awful the morsel you’re considering adding to your body is, maybe it’s not so bad – maybe it’s worse than you thought – compare it to your daily macros and see how you might be able to fit it in without upsetting the apple cart too much.
So let’s get to it, what are the ‘healthiest’ options for Halloween indulgence?
This is a tricky question. How do you measure ‘healthiest’ as it relates to something as complex as food – especially when you’re talking about something everyone knows is bad for them? I’ve plainly stated, I’m not a dietician, so sorting the accurate and truthful details on this could be tricky. I’m sure some of you may disagree with my ranking method, but since I’m not a fan of sugar, and that’s a core ingredient to any of these, let’s use that as our metric. (If you want to know why I’m not a fan of sugar, check out Sweet Deception: The Uncomfortable Truth About Sugar.)
A few details about the chart:
- I’ve pulled the nutrition information off of product photography found online.
- I’ve done the math to unclutter the serving sizes – many of these adjust the serving sizes either up or down to make the nutrition information look better.
- In the chart below, we’re looking at nutrition information PER PIECE OF CANDY, (except for smarties, candy corn, skittles and M&M’s – a single ‘smartie’ or skittle would be ridiculous) ranked from lowest to highest based on sugar content.
|Tootsie Roll Midgees (per candy)||24||3.4||0.5|
|Laffy Taffy Mini’s (per bar)||35||5||0.5|
|Milky Way mini’s (per bar)||38||5||1.5|
|Twix mini (per bar)||50||5||2.3|
|Kit Kat Snack Size (1 – two piece bar)||70||7||3.6|
|Butterfinger “Fun Size” (per bar)||85||7||3.5|
|Airheads Mini’s (per bar)||47||8||0.3|
|Snickers “Fun Size” (per bar)||71||8||3|
|Peanut M&M’s “Fun Size” (per bag)||90||9||5|
|Treat Size Sour Patch Kids (1 pouch)||55||9.5||0|
|Classic Tootsie Pop (1 pop)||60||11||0|
|Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup (1 single serving cup)||110||11||6.5|
|Charms Blow Pop (1 pop)||70||13||0|
|Candy Corn (Brach’s) – 15 pieces||110||22||0|
|Starburst Mini Pack (1 pack)||150||28||2|
|Fun Size Skittles (1 pack)||190||34||2|
If you ask me, candy corn should be the healthiest, because no-one likes candy corn. Bear in mind, none of these are actually “healthy” or good for you in any way – they’re indulgences. As long as you treat them as indulgences, and only have a little bit, then they’re fine for you. If however, you find yourself making a meal out of your kids Halloween bag, maybe you’re better off avoiding them all together.
I have no preferences as far as the list order goes (except for candy corn – the red headed stepchild of Halloween) the list is here to help you make the best choice you can when considering your indulgences this holiday season. Enjoy yourself, but just remember, for each Tootsie Roll midgee (arguably one of the healthiest options on the list) you consume, you’re looking at about 10 minutes on the treadmill to burn it off (give or take)!
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