School has just started, and children are already talking about what they are going to be for Halloween. Go into any store, and the school supplies have already been replaced with aisles of costume choices and candy – hundreds of “fun size” portions of the candy we all remember hoping to find in our pillow!
In the 1970s and 1980s, the time sorting through candy and trading with friends was just as important as each sweet bite, and parents of the were more worried about candy being tainted with poison or razor blades than they were about sugar content. Looking back, it either makes your mouth water or gives you a stomach ache.
Now, as an adult, you take a hard look at all the sugar that was blissfully consumed without fear of health consequences or tooth decay and compare it to what your child is consuming today. Keep in mind that one teaspoon of white table sugar equals 4 grams of sugar, and it is recommended that children eat fewer than six teaspoons of sugar a day. In researching the most popular Halloween candies, here are the top 10 candies with the highest and lowest sugar content.
Halloween Candy With Highest Sugar-Content
- Skittles – A small bag with eight pieces has 16 grams (4 teaspoons) of sugar.
- Junior Mints – A small box with about five pieces has 14 grams of sugar.
- Candy Corn – Nine pieces of candy corn contain 14 grams of sugar.
- Sour Patch Kids – Eight Sour Patch Kids have 13 grams of sugar.
- M&Ms – A snack-size bag of regular, milk-chocolate M&Ms contains 13 grams of sugar.
- Starburst – Four pieces of Starburst candy contain 11.5 grams of sugar.
- Nestle 100 Grand Bar – The snack-size bar has 11 grams of sugar.
- Baby Ruth – The snack-size bar has 10 grams of sugar.
- Butterfinger – The snack-size bar has 10 grams of sugar.
- Twizzlers – A two-piece package has 9.5 grams of sugar.
Halloween Candy With Lowest Sugar-Content
- Take 5 Candy Bar – The snack-size bar has 9 grams of sugar.
- Snickers – A snack-size bar has 8.5 grams of sugar.
- Hershey’s Kisses – Three pieces contain 7.7 grams of sugar.
- Toblerone Chocolate – A snack-size piece has 7.4 grams of sugar.
- Reece’s Pieces – A snack-size bag contains 7 grams of sugar.
- Nestle Crunch Bar – A snack-size bar has 7 grams of sugar.
- Kit Kat – A snack-size bar has 7 grams of sugar.
- M&Ms Pretzel – A snack-size bag 7 grams of sugar.
- Smarties – A snack size roll has 6 grams of sugar.
- Pixie Stix – One straw contains 2.1 grams of sugar.
After trick or treating, a typical splurge of Halloween candy may include a bag of M&Ms (13 grams of sugar), a bag of Skittles (16 grams of sugar), six Starbursts (17 grams of sugar), a Kit Kat (7 grams of sugar), a few Smarties (6 grams of sugar), and Reece’s Pieces to round it all out (7 grams of sugar). Add that up and it is about 16.5 teaspoons of sugar in one sitting.
The older the kids are, the more likely they’ll eat more candy in that first candy binge. Parents do a great job of rationing the candy for a few days, but kids are also good at sneaking a little extra. Having a realistic view of the true amount of sugar going into a child’s system is really important. Depending on their age and size, the extra calories can have a tremendous impact.
In no way is what I’m saying meant to be a bummer for those who truly enjoy the spirit of Halloween. That spirit, however, is more than candy. Sharing fun costumes and time with kids and friends is far more valuable that candy!