In recent years, scientists and nutritionists have cautioned that added sugars, which make up 10 percent of the average American’s caloric intake, are more addictive than addictive drugs like cocaine. In addition to contributing to weight gain and cavities, sugar is considered an “empty calorie,” meaning it contains no nutritional value. When people fill up on sugary foods, they push healthy foods out of their diets, which ultimately leaves them malnourished.
Although sugar has become a staple in our diet year round, there’s no doubt that our collective consumption multiplies around Halloween. It is, after all, the biggest confectionery holiday of the year. Though overindulging is never a good idea, deprivation will only lead to binges later on. The key to enjoying Halloween candy without breaking your diet is moderation. Knowing which Halloween candies you should absolutely avoid is also helpful.
In order to help you make the best choices this Halloween, we compared the sugar content of the most popular Halloween candies. We found that the Halloween candy with the highest sugar content is Nerds, followed by Pixie Stix, Fun Dip, Sprees, and candy corn. A fun size box of Nerds contains 12 grams of sugar, accounting for a whopping 93 percent of its weight. Its top two ingredients are sugar and dextrose, followed by equally unhealthy corn syrup, artificial flavors, carnauba wax, and artificial coloring.
If you’re looking to keep your sugar intake in check this Halloween, it’s best to steer clear of these five candies, especially Nerds. For the occasional indulgence, you might want to choose chocolate candies, which tend to contain less sugar than fruit flavored varieties. Better yet, opt for healthy Halloween treats, such as pumpkins made out of clementine or ghosts made out of bananas.
The accompanying slideshow is provided by fellow Daily Meal editorial staff Lauren Gordon.