Ask most children what they associate with Easter, and I’ll bet the answer will be Easter Eggs, and more specifically chocolate eggs! While there is nothing wrong with a treat every now and then, many children are receiving several Easter eggs, which add up to a significant amount of chocolate, and ultimately that means lots of extra sugar.
The World Health Organisation recently published guidelines on sugar intake for adults and children, recommending that no more than 10% of our energy intake should come from ‘free sugars’. Free sugars are simple sugars added to foods by the manufacturer or consumer. They are also sugars that are naturally present in honey, syrups and fruit juices.
Become familiar with the different names used for sugar on labels. These are glucose, sucrose, maltose, corn syrup, honey, invert sugar, hydrolysed starch and fructose. And remember, the higher up the ingredients list any of these sugars are, then the more contained in the product.
While the majority of Easter eggs look fairly innocent, portion sizes are often large and there are often additional bars or bags of small filled eggs alongside the main hollow chocolate egg. Many of the outer packages remind us to be ‘treatwise’ and recommend that we eat only small serving sizes.