Monday, October 26, 2015
Candy is dandy
Beth Kimmerle sought to dispel some myths about candy in the Oct 23rd Washington Post.
First, it's a myth that natural and sugar-free alternatives are healthier than candy. Candy, while not the enemy, is not exactly health food, so people look for alternatives. But protein bars, granola bars, energy bars, etc, can have more sugar and cals than a candy bar. The oats, fruit, flax, and nuts are often bound together by corn syrup or chocolate. A choc-dipped granola bar (Target's Pantry Party) contains 15 gr of sugar and 140 cals. A Fun Size Snickers is 8.5 grams or sugar and 80 cals. (A medium-sized apple has 19 gr of sugar.)
Sugar-free gummies are made with sugar alcohols--which can cause diarrhea.
Another myth is that old candy should be thrown out. There is no sell-by date for candy. Candy is cooked to high temps. But if it contains butter, nuts or chocolate, think a year maybe. Brittle old candy can also break teeth.
Remember how dark chocolate is good for you? Fine print: This is in powdered, unsweetened form...not luscious bar form.
Many people also think candy recipes are kept consistent--yet the product can vary country to country. Cadbury bars: First ingredient in the US is chocolate, in Britain, milk. Chocolate itself varies from place to place.
Was Halloween invented by the candy companies? Nah--it goes way back a Celtic harvest festivals where the spirits were thanked for the harvest. This evolved into All Souls Day, where families handed out sweet cakes in exchange for prayers for the dead.
By the way, 75% of adults eat candy at least once a week.