5 Tricks to Curb Candy Binges

By now you know from reading our blog that although we’re registered dietitians and personal trainers who love our veggies, we also have a nasty sweet tooth that we work hard to keep in check! We’ve experimented to learn all of the secrets and what we know what works for us and our clients.  So here you have it– tried and true tips to keep candy from getting the best of you!


Trick 1: Keep your taste buds busy
The candy dish that has secured a permanent spot on your coworker’s desk is a lot less tempting when you’re already enjoying the flavor of sugar-free gum (there are several that use all-natural, sugar-free sweeteners). Stock up on your favorite flavors and keep it with you at all times, and before heading into any tempting situation, take a moment to remind yourself that you’re going to chew the gum and not the sugary sweets. And for extra protection against a sugar binge, don’t hesitate to politely ask your candy-carrying colleagues to store the goodies in a drawer. Out of sight, out of mouth!


Trick 2: Sneak in smart snacks

Toting satisfying snacks with you wherever you go can stop candy cravings before they start. Focus on fiber and protein options to help you stay energized and satisfied between meals. Our pick for a quick bite: pistachios. They’re perfect for tossing into purses and gym bags, and of all the nuts in the tree, they’re one of the highest in protein and fiber, and among the lowest in fat and calories. We like Wonderful Pistachios, which makes pre-portioned 100-calorie packs, perfect for on-the-go noshing.757916a1_CS4


Trick 3: Rework your leftovers
Try making your own 100-calorie packs with your favorite indulgences that would typically get out of hand. Pre-portioned treats will keep you satisfied and prevent overboard eating.  A smart move: commit to having just one bag on days when a candy craving hits. To make your 100-calorie packs, try any of these (these are typical Halloween faves, but let’s face it, you can find them all year round! 🙂 )  4 Hershey Kisses, 2 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups miniatures, 2 mini Nestle Crunch bars, 4 Tootsie Roll midges, 4 rolls of Smarties, 3 Laffy Taffy candies, 2 fun-size Milk Duds, 2 mini York Peppermint Patties, or 4 Jolly Rancher hard candies.

Trick 4: Don’t toss your trash
Save your wrappers and keep them with you. They’re a visual reminder of exactly how much you’ve eaten. There’s no forgetting that you scarfed an entire bag of Snickers minis last night if you’re faced with the proof.

Trick 5: Do your research
Learn how many runs and reps you’ll have to do in order to burn off your indulgence. Knowing you have to jog for an hour just to burn off a few measly candy bars may be enough motivation to keep your hand out of the bag.

Tammy Lakatos Shames and Elysse “Lyssie” Lakatos—otherwise known as the Nutrition Twins—are registered dietitians, certified personal trainers, and authors of The Nutrition Twins’ Veggie Cure: Expert Advice and Tantalizing Recipes for Health, Energy and Beauty


For more nutrition guidance and a ‘get healthy’ plan, please check out the “The Nutrition Twins Veggie Cure


The Nutrition Twins work with Wonderful pistachios to help people make healthier snack choices.

Tricks and Treats for a Happy, Guilt-Free Halloween!

Let’s face it—who doesn’t want to indulge without breaking the calorie bank? We certainly do!

Here are some of our favorite guilt-free tricks and treats—and for fewer than 100 calories!

 Halloween Candy


  1. The best mini candy option? 3 musketeers have only 24 calories per mini!.
  1. Small Twix = 80 calories per bar!
  1. A true Halloween staple– one pack of fun size M&Ms has 90 calories.
  1. It may not be Christmas where you hope to get a kiss under the mistletoe, but this is one kiss that you won’t regret in the morning! One kiss is just 22 calories. So if you have the option between regular M&Ms and Hershey kisses, go with the kiss every time!
  1. Beware: sugar free. While they may have less sugar, they often will still rack up fat and calories. Sneaky Spooky!


Happy Halloween!




Skinny Halloween Treats for the Candy Lover

Hello Halloween (and Candy) Lovers! 🙂

By now you’ve read all of our tips to help you from overdoing it on the candy and you’ve seen our delicious and healthy foods to have around so that you are excited to eat it–and not tempted by the candy.  BUT–what if a candy lover just wants a lil’ candy?!

Have no fear–we hear ya and we’ve got you doubly covered!



AND NOW FOR THE CANDY, drum roll please…

OUR FAVE LOW-CALORIE CHOCOLATE TREATS (Each one has 20 – 35 calories and 0.5 – 1.5g fat–these rock!!)

  • 3 Musketeers Minis
  • Hershey’s Kisses
  • Tootsie Roll Midgees
  • Whoppers Malted Milk Balls (3-piece tubes)
  • Dum Dums
  • Everlasting Gobstopper mini pouches

CHOCOLATE MINIS and Other Cheweys (All the fun but a few more calories–you’ve seen them– the chocolates are small, typically square, bites. See below–they have 35 – 55 calories)

  • Baby Ruth
  • Butterfinger
  • Hershey’s Special Dark, Krackel, Milk Chocolate, and Mr. Goodbar
  • Kit Kat
  • Milky Way
  • Nestlé Crunch
  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
  • Snickers
  • Twix
  • Laffy Taffy mini bars
  • Now and Later (2 pieces)
  • Starburst (2 pieces)
  • SweeTarts Chews
  • Twizzlers Cherry Pull ‘n’ Peel snack-sized pieces
  • Twizzlers Strawberry Twists snack-sized pieces

Snack size bags of the following have 50-55 calories

  • Brach’s Candy Corn
  • Hot Tamales
  • Mike and Ike
  • Sour Patch Kids
  • Swedish Fish

SNACK-SIZE/FUN-SIZE CHOCOLATE (Delish–but try to make this the biggest you go! These are about 2 inches long (about 0.5 ounce–these have 60 – 85 calories per piece, pack, box, etc!)

  • Baby Ruth
  • Butterfinger
  • Hershey’s Milk Chocolate
  • Junior Mints
  • Kit Kat (one 2-piece bar)
  • M&M’s Milk Chocolate
  • Milky Way
  • Nestlé Crunch
  • Raisinets
  • Snickers
  • York Peppermint Patties
  • 3 Musketeers

And yes, there are other candies in this calorie range–and if you can stick to one serving of them–great!  We go for the chocolate ones–like in our lists above! YUM!! Enjoy!!

Want something chewy or sour candy? Try this!

Halloween–Do-IT Swaps!

Swapping those high calorie, low nutrient foods like candy and sweets for healthier foods with the same taste is the perfect way to hit all of those cravings while staying healthy!


Want something sour? Try green apples instead of sour candy for a boost of fiber for long lasting energy!

For a different sweet and sour twist, chop a green apple into ¼- ½ inch pieces and top with pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon) and microwave for about 5 minutes on high.  We actually use about 1- 1/2 (and sometimes 2!) teaspoons of cinnamon and coat all of the surface of the apple pieces–yum!  Then mix with your favorite yogurt.

NOTE that microwave times vary depending on your microwave so you may want to take it out after 4 minutes and see if you need to put it in for longer for the desired texture. The photo above shows how it looks when we bake the whole apple–yum! But the chunks work great too and you can coat them entirely on all edges with the cinnamon–so we often prefer that!

Craving something chewy? Dried fruits of all kinds are a great replacement for gummy candies, especially with their high vitamin C content!

Want more ideas and tips?  You may like–

Skinny Halloween Treats for The Candy Lover
Halloween Tricks & Treats for Healthy Snacking

Halloween Tricks & Treats for Healthy Snacking

Tips and Tricks for Healthy Halloween Snacking

Halloween is known for being a scary time of year, but as registered dietitian nutritionists and Moms what is most frightening about this holiday to us is that the average trick-or-treater consumes about 3 cups of sugar (4,800 calories!) on Halloween night alone.  Eeks!  And then there’s still all of the leftover candy to consider.

Don’t fret –here are some techniques to try to keep your kids from overdoing it (and to prevent you from letting all the candy around the house from getting the best of you!)


1.    Tell your kids in advance how many/much candy you will permit them to have on Halloween night.   This way they will know what to expect and pay attention to what they will have without thinking that they can just dive into their Pumpkin Baskets and eat willy-nilly. Tammy tells her twin daughters in advance that they can have two pieces of candy on Halloween night.

This is a good idea for adults too. Tell yourself how many pieces of candy you will limit yourself to. This way you will keep track, have a plan and won’t eat mindlessly or without restraint.

2.    Dealing with leftover candy: Keep healthier, yet satisfying treats around the house (AND SEE OUR FAVE LOW-CALORIE CANDY OPTIONS–some are 20-35 calories and chocolate–woohoo!) so your kids aren’t asking for all of their unhealthy Halloween candy throughout the day (and if they do—offer these to satisfy their hunger and sugar cravings in a healthier way.) These options are helpful to have around for adults too!

Menu of Healthy Halloween Treats:

Click here to see our delish swaps for when you want something chewy or when you want something instead of sour candy.

•    Popcorn – Popcorn is a perfect healthy snack that can be easily turned indulgent.  Toss a few pieces of dark chocolate into the mix and you have a tasty, low-sugar snack packed with antioxidants and whole grains.

•    Snack Bars – Some snack bars taste so good they can be confused for candy. KIND bars, made with all natural ingredients, are not only healthy but also available in indulgently delicious flavors like KIND Dark Chocolate Nuts & Sea Salt and Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Pecan. They are the perfect treat for kids and also a good source of protein.

•    Fruit Covered in Caramel/Chocolate – Freeze bananas and drizzle with a tad of melted dark chocolate or cover apples in homemade, low-sugar caramel.  These are decadent treats that are lower in sugar and much healthier than your average candy bar.

•    Natural Fruit Snacks/Wraps – Trader Joe’s Organic Fruit Wraps are a perfect example of flavorful snacks and these wraps are 100% fruit and low in sugar.

Fresh fruit—always the perfect, healthy treat to offer.

•    Pumpkin and Yogurt Parfait—kids love parfaits, so simply layer fat-free vanilla yogurt with canned pumpkin mixed with Pumpkin pie spice and a teaspoon of brown sugar. Top with a few chocolate chip morsels.  (We also like to include a layer of sliced apple that we microwave for 5 minutes with pumpkin pie spice.  The sweet juice from the spiced apple makes the parfait even more delish!)

We’re not gonna lie–we love chocolate like any sane person :).  We keep frozen fudge bars, Arctic Zero Mint Chocolate Ice Cream and 100 calorie Deep Chocolate Vitatops around too!