published Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

Tiny Halloween candies pack a big caloric punch

Poll
Do you plan to trick or treat?

It's no coincidence that the devil is well-represented at Halloween gatherings.

For those trying to count calories, today represents perhaps the biggest temptation of the year.

Americans spent about $2.3 billion on Halloween Candy in 2011, and that number is expected to grow 1 percent to 3 percent this year, according to the National Confectioners Association.

Here's something that will give you Halloween chills: That cute Reese's Peanut Butter Cup shaped like a pumpkin comes with some scary stats: 180 calories, or two-thirds more calories than a regular Reese's cup.

Tonight when you're raiding your kids' candy loot under the guise of "checking for safety" (we're not judging, we've all been there and done that), keep the following advice in mind about how quickly candy calories can mount up.

Just like Pringles, you can't eat just one. But by choosing treats lowest in calories, maybe they won't come back to haunt you.

Here are best and worst candy and snack choices based on calorie counts, according to Hungry Girl Lisa Lillien.

LOW-CALORIE CANDY

These are individual treats with 20-38 calories each, one Weight Watchers PointsPlus count each.

• 3 Musketeers Minis

• Hershey's Kisses

• Dum Dums

• Smarties rolls

• Tootsie Roll Midgees

MODERATELY HIGH

These are snack-size (candy bars about 2 inches in length), 60-85 calories, 2 PointsPlus each.

• 3 Musketeers fun size

• Baby Ruth fun size

• M&M's Milk Chocolate snack packages

• Kit Kat fun size

• York Peppermint Patties

HIGH CALORIES

These contain 180-200 calories, 5 PointsPlus each.

• Cheez-It Snack Crackers packages

• Keebler Mini Fudge Stripes packages

• Reese's Peanut Butter Pumpkins (one pumpkin, half of a package)

• 4 pieces Brach's AirHeads

• 1 fun-size Mounds

Contact Susan Pierce at spierce@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6284.

about Susan Pierce...

Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...

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