Happy Easter! As we head into the long weekend, high days and holidays can feel like an overload of temptation if you're trying to lose weight, but the good news about calorie counting is that you can celebrate AND keep your goal on track.
We thought it would be useful to delve into the world of Easter eggs and see if they are all the same, or whether it's possible to find any healthier options.
In general, the calorie and fat content of an Easter egg are directly related to its size, but these vary hugely. From a small child's size Chocolate Buttons egg (101g) with around 530 calories and 30g of fat, to a giant Lindt Milk Chocolate egg with Truffles (285g) containing around 1,500 calories and over 80g of fat - and that's just the egg not the truffles! Obviously we're not suggesting that anyone would eat the giant egg in one sitting, but that's a lot of chocolate hanging around to provide temptation.
Bags of mini eggs might be small but are still quite calorific. The good news is that they are available in treat size bags so you can keep a check on portions.
No-one likes to be a party pooper, and I'm a firm believer that at special times of the year - birthdays, holidays, Christmas, Easter - it is important to enjoy the occasion. However lapsing back into old habits (even just for a day) can become the slippery slope to undoing all your hard work, so it's really important to find ways to enjoy the occasion, but at the same time being mindful about maintaining some balance.
The good thing about Nutracheck is that no food is banned - so if you want to have a cheeky Crème Egg on the way home from work, that's fine! Just make sure that you record everything in your diary.
When it comes to chocolate eggs, aside from choosing drak chocolate over milk or white, there aren't any healthier options, it is portion control that's key. So I have shortlisted my top 6 best 'treat size' chocolate Easter options this year. All come in at under 200 calories per portion, so they won't break the calorie bank.
|Easter Egg||Calories per portion||Fat per portion|
|1. Lindt Chocolate Chicks (10g)||57 calories||3.7g|
|2. Cadbury Mini Eggs treat size (31.9g bag)||155 calories||6.6g|
|3. Cadbury Crème Egg||175 calories||6g|
|4. Galaxy Caramel Mini Eggs (12g per egg)||59 calories||3g|
|5. Kinder Mini Eggs||145 calories (per 5 eggs)||9g (per 5 eggs)|
|6. Lindt Lindor Milk Chocolate Egg (18g)||114 calories||8.8g|
Of course, you might just prefer cracking into a a traditional Easter Egg. And that's fine - just remember portion control. As a child I always broke up my egg into pieces to make it last longer! I'd keep it in a plastic container in the fridge and take a piece out when I fancied it (out of sight out of mind definitely helps to put the brakes on eating). The best bit was still having chocolate left days after my sister had eaten all of hers!
So to answer to the classic Easter Egg advertising slogan 'How Do You Eat Yours'?... My advice would be 'not all in one go'!
Happy Easter everyone - enjoy!
Nutritionist Emma Brown, MSc Human Nutrition is passionate about how food science applies to the human body, and how the nutrients in what we eat affect us and ultimately have an impact on our health.