Just a Spoonful of Sugar

“Mom, can I have this?”
“Dad, I want candy!”
“Can we get a candy bar, too?”

If these phrases are something you hear on a regular basis when at the store, you are not alone. Candy is always conveniently placed for little wandering eyes to see and, inevitably, want. And what adult hasn’t indulged a young one by buying them a candy bar on the way out the door? They often deserve it, after all. But how much sugar is too much for one day? And how much sugar is in that candy bar your little one is munching on right before bed?

According to the AHA, for children between the ages of 2-18, less than 25g of added sugars (6 teaspoons) are recommended per day.
Added sugars, by definition, are “sugars and syrups added to food and beverages when processed or prepared. This does not include naturally occurring sugars such as in fruits and vegetables.” (choosemyplate.gov)


Eating candy is not all bad, nor should sugar be forbidden, but we should be conscious about our sugar intake and keep a balanced diet. Keep reading to see a list of popular candy bars with sugars in grams.

candy bars

Grams of Sugar in Popular Candy Bars
(All of these candy bars have just below or more than the recommended amount of added sugars per day)

Snickers- 20g
Kit Kat- 21g
Reese’s- 21g
Almond Joy- 24g
Twix- 24g
Hershey’s- 24g
M&Ms- 31g
Milky Way- 35g
3 Musketeers- 40g

Yikes! That’s a lot of sugar for one candy bar. If these options are now out but your child still really wants some candy, here are some better options with less added sugars.

smarties candy

Alternative Candy Options
Smarties- 6g
Tootsie Pop- 10g
Ring Pop- 11g
Blow Pop- 13g

*Most added sugars come from soft drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks, so keep an eye on those sugars as well!*

Next time your child asks for a candy bar at the store, take a look at those added sugars on the back and keep in mind the recommended daily amount. It could be more than you think!

girl on pile of candy