Sweet tips for minimizing Valentine’s calories

CONSUMER REPORTS — If you are really tempted by candy, how much can you have before it’s too much? Consumer Reports checked out Valentine’s Day candies to see what a 100 calorie serving looks like, including those conversation hearts and boxed chocolates.

If you have special feelings for Sweethearts conversation candies, ooh la la! You’re in luck. You can say “be mine” to thirty of these, that add up to 100 calories.

Or you could have about 57 Brachs Cinnamon Imperial Hearts. And if your sweet tooth leans to sour, grab 18 SweetTarts Hearts.

If you’re lucky enough to receive chocolate, pace yourself. A hundred calories adds up fast– about three of these dark chocolate hearts from Dove will hit the mark… Or two pieces of these Godiva Valentine’s Day Message Truffles…or about one piece of boxed chocolate  like Whitman’s Assorted or Ferrero Rocher Hazelnut Chocolates.

But guess what? Consumer Reports nutritionists say it’s okay to indulge your sweet tooth…once in awhile. It’s okay to have a treat now and then, it actually can help you stick to a healthy eating pattern because you don’t feel so deprived.

If you want to ration your intake, store your chocolate in a cool, dry place, not in the refrigerator, where it can pick up odors and flavors from other foods. If your chocolates develop a chalky haze on the surface, it can mean they’ve been stored improperly. But it’s usually just the surface, not the flavor, that’s been affected, and they’re safe to eat.

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