Teuila Fuatai is a reporter for the NZ Herald

Health warning to take it steady with Easter treats

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Animal-themed chocolate eggs are proving popular Easter goodies among Hawke's Bay sweet-tooths this year - but they may come at a cost.

Taradale's Gotcha Treats owner Amanda Lloyd said an Easter egg which featured a bright chocolate dinosaur on the outside was the pick of the bunch for young boys.

"For girls, our butterfly eggs have been most popular."

And for romantics, chocolate eggs decorated with red roses and a special range of Prenzels liqueur treats were crowd favourites, Mrs Lloyd said.

This weekend, delicious treats and hot-cross buns will be living-room staples in countless Hawke's Bay homes.

But at what cost?

One Creme egg, an old Kiwi favourite, contains about 171 calories and 25.1g of sugar. This translates to about five teaspoons of sugar.

To burn off those calories, an 80kg adult would have to run about 13 minutes at a speed of 10km/h.

Overseas research into the Easter eating habits of Britons found children in the UK received on average eight chocolate eggs each at Easter.

That equated to about 12,000 calories and about 270 teaspoons of sugar.

Healthy Food Guide nutritionist Claire Turnbull believed Kiwi kids consumed less Easter chocolate than their British counterparts.

However, even three large Easter eggs in one day "is a massive amount of sugar and saturated fat in one go, and a lot of calories", the former UK resident warned.

While an Easter chocolate gorge was unlikely to have long-term health effects, it would not be "particularly helpful" for children, she said.

They would probably feel quite ill after eating that much sugar and saturated fat, Mrs Turnbull said.

To help prevent kids over-indulging on chocolate these holidays, she recommended running an Easter egg hunt with a group chocolate egg prize to reduce the amount each child consumed.

And beginning the Easter weekend with a boiled egg breakfast accompanied by "toast soldiers" would help children associate Easter with real eggs as well as chocolate ones.

Mrs Turnbull also recommended encouraging youngsters to spread out consumption of their Easter treats, if possible over a few weeks.

"There's no reason why you need to gorge yourself and make yourself feel sick this Easter."


  • Cadbury Caramello Egg, 10.5g - 51 calories, 5.3g sugar (about 1 tsp), about 4 minutes of running or 9 minutes of walking.

  • Cadbury Creme Egg, 39g - 171 calories, 25.1g sugar (about 5 tsp). about 13 minutes of running or 30 minutes of walking.

  • Lindt Gold Bunny milk chocolate, 100g - 542 calories, 55.1g sugar (about 11 tsp), about 40 minutes of running or 92 minutes of walking.

- based on an 80kg adult. Running speed 10km/h; walking speed 6km/h.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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