With Halloween approaching, many parents are wondering whether they should offer sugar-free candy to trick-or-treaters. Nutrition Diva scares up the facts.
Most of the parents I know are trying to cut back on the amount of sugar their kids are consuming. But here comes Halloween, a holiday that's virtually defined by candy. What's a responsible adult to do? Perhaps you found yourself pausing over the sugar-free candy selection at the store.
Popular brands including Jolly Ranchers, Twizzlers, Hershey's, LifeSavers, Dove Chocolate, and Werther's have all introduced sugar-free versions. Although it might seem as if sugar-free candy would be a healthier choice, handing it out to trick-or-treaters might be more of a trick than a treat. (And if you're one of those who eats one piece for every one you give out, the trick might well be on you!)
Sugar-free candies are usually made with sugar alcohols, such as sorbitol or xylitol, which will cause diarrhea if you overdo it. One or two pieces of sugar-free candy is unlikely to be a problem. But if every health-conscious parent in the neighborhood were to have the same idea, it might be a long night for everyone!
See also: Nutrition Diva's Halloween Survival Guide