Halloween Candy Wars: Battling Sweet Tooth Cravings
October 22, 2014
In just a few weeks children will be lining the streets in costumes and going door-to-door seeking out treats from willing neighbors. In preparation of Halloween, many stock up sweets days or even weeks in advance…and if you’re like most, you’ve certainly been tempted to bust open a bag and indulge in one, two or 10 pieces of candy!
For soon-to-be-moms, you may be wondering how these sweets will affect you or your baby: “Can I have a piece of candy? How many pieces should I have? How can I beat these cravings?”
Can I satisfy my sweet tooth?
Generally candy and other sweets have little to no nutritional value. The US Department of Health and Human Services recommends that woman should focus on eating nutrient-dense foods and limit the consumption of added sugars, solid fats and refined grains.1 As a general rule of thumb for everyone, candy should only be eaten occasionally and in small quantities. But some research suggests that chocolate does increase the production of endorphins, which can result in a semi-euphoric state. Another study conducted in 2008 suggests that women who eat a piece of chocolate daily, particularly dark chocolate, could have a 40% lower risk of developing the dangerous high blood pressure condition, known as preeclampsia.2 So if you have to give into that aching sweet tooth, reach for the chocolate variety.
How Much Is Too Much?
While there may be some positives that come from eating chocolate, overindulgence should still be avoided. During Halloween a chocolate mini-candy bar or small piece of chocolate would be ideal. Try to avoid the full size bars or eating more than one or two pieces. If you don’t like chocolate or are allergic to it, limit yourself one to two servings of the sugary sweets, like Sweet Tarts® or Nerds®.
If you don’t want to give into your sweet tooth or you’re afraid eating just one piece of candy isn’t going to do it, here are some things you can do to resist cravings:
- Have a sweet, but healthy alternative ready – Strawberries, pineapples and other fruits have naturally occurring sugar and can help curb cravings for foods with added sugars. Or try sweetening a bowl of whole grain cereal.
- Drink more water – Drinking 8-10 servings of water each day reduces dehydration, which can often be confused as a food craving.3
- Take a prenatal vitamin daily – Research suggests that cravings for sweets can be brought on when the body lacks certain nutrients. 3 Taking a prenatal vitamin can help supplement your nutritional needs.
Managing your caloric and nutritional intake is important for everyone. But the importance is amplified when you are eating for two. Finding the best prenatal vitamins is crucial to ensure you and your baby are getting proper nutrient intake. The Prenate® Vitamin Family is the gold standard of prenatal vitamins. Click here to learn more about Prenate® Vitamin Family or take advantage of the special rebates on your prenatal vitamin prescription.