Finding healthy low sugar snacks for your kids that they will actually eat can be a challenge! When you're packing their lunch for school or buying snacks to have on hand at home or on the go, here's a big caution: watch out for sugar! Often the better a snack or treat tastes, the more sugar it has in it. Here's the scoop on how much sugar your child is probably eating, why it's so important to watch your child's sugar intake, and how to read nutrition labels to choose the best low sugar snacks for your kids.

 

How Much Sugar Does The Average Kid Eat?

As parents, ensuring our children have a well-balanced and healthy diet can be challenging. You may be dealing with a picky eater or accounting for allergies that complicate your meal planning. But there is one nutritional challenge that all parents face – sugar. Unfortunately, there's too much sugar in so many of our kids' favorite foods and it really adds up. As parents we may be focusing on how much sugar is in their candy or soda, but check out other foods -- even bagels, tomato sauce, yogurt and cereal can have significant amounts of added sugar!  

As one example, think about what goes in a common lunchbox: peanut butter sandwich, fruit snacks and a juice box. Sound like a decent lunch? Think again. If you're not careful, just this one meal can deliver over 50 grams of sugar, twice the maximum recommendation for a full day.

Too much sugar in your child’s diet can greatly impact their health. Healthline has identified more than 11 health issues that arise from eating too much sugar, including obesity and an increased risk of several chronic illnesses like diabetes, risk factors for heart disease like high cholesterol and high blood pressure, dental caries, and asthma.   Too much sugar in childhood also influences your kids' food preferences later in life. Sugar has serious and long lasting impact on our kids.

How To Choose The Best Low Sugar Snack Bar For Kids

The reality is that most kids are eating too much sugar. It's easy to miss how much it adds up if you're not tracking it -- it's everywhere! One study showed that the average 4-8 year old is eating 15 teaspoons of added sugar per day. The USDA Research Service shared a scary stat: the average kid under 12 eats 49 pounds of sugar per year! Yikes!

Sugar consumption can peak in teen years. Kids aged 14-18 can average 34 teaspoons every day! On average, Americans, including adults, are consuming upwards of 80 grams, or 19 teaspoons, of sugar a day.

A really startling recent study showed how early kids are eating added sugars. The new study from the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) showed that babies start eating added sugar before their first birthday. Toddlers by the age of 19-23 months eat an average of more than 7 teaspoons of sugar a day -- that's as much or more than the maximum for adults! 

OK, so now that we're sufficiently horrified by the amount of sugar kids eat, what do we do about it?

 

How Much Sugar Should A Child Eat In A Day?

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), children ages 2-18 should not consume more than 25 grams, or 6 teaspoons, of sugar daily. The AHA goes on to provide a more actionable range that states consumption should fall between 12-25 grams, or 3-6 teaspoons, daily depending on child’s caloric intake. They also say that children under 2 years old should have no added sugar. Sounds straighforward? Not quite. It also really matters what kind of sugar you're kids are eating, and the amount and type of carbs in general.

"The AHA provides a terrific description of the "two types of sugars in American diets: naturally occurring sugars and added sugars.

  • Naturally occurring sugars are found naturally in foods such as fruit (fructose) and milk (lactose).
  • Added sugars include any sugars or caloric sweeteners that are added to foods or beverages during processing or preparation (such as putting sugar in your coffee or adding sugar to your cereal). Added sugars (or added sweeteners) can include natural sugars such as white sugar, brown sugar and honey as well as other caloric sweeteners that are chemically manufactured (such as high fructose corn syrup).”

While there doesn’t appear to be a recommended sugar consumption guide for how, when, and how much sugar kids should be eating at any point during the day, there are some loose rules to follow. First things first, your kid does not have to consume 25 grams of sugar just because the range permits it. Try to aim on the lower end of the range versus the higher.

Ideally you will want to spread out their sugar consumption throughout the day. Example:  kids should not start their day eating foods that equal a large percentage of their daily sugar allotment. Same with ending their day; your kids don't need added calories right before bed. So, trying to slow their consumption of sugar throughout the day should be your goal. Depending on your personal goal for your kids, a suggested range might be 3-7grams of sugar for each meal or snack. You can accomplish this by being mindful and making educated choices by reading the nutrition labels.

 

Where do carbs fit in?

In addition to understanding sugars, parents should also keep track of carbohydrate intake. The Mayo Clinic suggests carbohydrates should make up 45 to 65 percent of a person’s daily caloric intake. What does this have to do with sugar? According to KidsHealth, “All carbohydrates are broken down into simple sugars, which are absorbed into the bloodstream.” The rate at which these sugars are absorbed impact your blood glucose levels. Glucose is the sugar that your body uses for energy. For example, refined sugars found in complex carbohydrates (detailed below) are often easier for your body to turn into glucose and therefore have a more immediate impact on your energy – you might know this as a ‘sugar high.’

Here are the two main forms of carbohydrates found in food – simple and complex carbohydrates:

  1. Simple Carbohydrates. Also known as simple sugars, include fructose, glucose, and lactose. These types of carbohydrates are found mostly in whole fruits.
  2. Complex Carbohydrates. Also known as starches, this type of carbohydrate is found in starchy vegetables, or breads, whole grains, and cereals (fiber).

 

How To Assess Sugar On Nutrition Labels

According to a recent article in Business Insider, “Nutrition labels aren't currently required to differentiate between naturally occurring and added sugars in products. But by 2021, all food labels in the US will be redesigned to note added sugars, so you'll eventually be able to see how much white sugar, honey, caramel, corn syrup, and other sweeteners are mixed in.” So, as parents, you need to be even more mindful when reading the nutritional labels to account for the ‘hidden’ sugars in foods.

Nutrition labels can be tricky, and often on purpose. So how do you choose the best low sugar snack for kids?  There are a few key ingredients to look for on the label: carbohydrates, sugar, and then the actual listed ingredients. In addition to the sugar count listed on the nutrition label, you want to consider any artificial sweeteners, flavors, and other sugar substitutes. For more information on the 6 most commonly used sugar substitutes and whether or not they are healthy, check out this article from Truth + Health.

 

WHAT TO AVOID:

  • Words ending in “ose” (sucrose, glucose)
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup
  • Molasses
  • Corn Syrup
  • Juice Concentrate
  • Cane Sugar
  • Fruit Juice Concentrate
  • Agave Nectar
  • Honey
  • Brown Rice Syrup
  • Artificial flavors
  • Artificial sweeteners

In general, you can also get a sense of when a food has too much sugar based on where sugars appear in the ingredient list. If its one of the first ingredients, it's probably too high in sugar.

 

WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE ON YOUR LABEL:

  • In general, fewer, real ingredients are better
  • Naturally occurring whole foods (fruits, nuts, grains)
  • Ingredients you can pronounce

The topic of sugar is a tough one, its challenging to keep track of how much your kids are eating and labels can be a bit hard to read. But one thing we know for sure it that given how much sugar our kids are eating and the detrimental effects of too much sugar, its well worth the extra effort to help limit sugar in your kid's diet. Too much sugar? Scary. Limiting sugar and helping your kids build healthier bodies? Sweet!

Dark Chocolate Coconut Truth Bar

Truth Bars are a great low-sugar snack bar option for your little ones. Each one of the five flavors contains between 4-7 grams of sugar. All of these bars are gluten free, kosher, and are packed with pre- and probiotics for gut health! Two of the five flavors (Dark Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Raspberry Coconut) are also vegan. The high-quality flavor combos of these bars will make your kids think they eating a candy bar! This bar is a win-win for parents and kids alike; healthy and delicious!





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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the key attributes of a Truth Bar?

Truth Bars are functional nutrition bars with many key attributes. They were the first bars with both prebiotics and probiotics; they are high in fiber (13-14g); low in sugar (4-5g); contain a full day's supply of Omega-3 from white chia seed (250mg); and are made from natural, real food ingredients with no fillers. They are gluten-free, kosher, non-GMO, soy-free and all 200 calories or less. Truth Bars contain premium, mostly organic ingredients such as organic extra virgin coconut in our coconut bars. Truth Bars come in both Vegan and Non-Vegan varieties. Best of all, Truth Bars continue to receive mostly five stars for great taste!

Questions About Prebiotics and Probiotics:

What is a probiotic?

Probiotics are good bacteria in your digestive system that help to keep your gut healthy and that make a beneficial contribution to your overall health.

What is a prebiotic?

Prebiotics are indigestible fibers that come mainly from certain plant foods that feed the good bacteria in your gut.

Why is it important to have both prebiotics and probiotics together?

Prebiotics feed the probiotics to help them thrive and work longer in your body. When combining a nurturing base of prebiotics in the belly, with a good dose of probiotics, a garden of flora blossoms and fills the gut with a balanced, healthy microbiome.

How much probiotic is in each Truth Bar?

1 Billion CFU's.

What is the strain of probiotic used in Truth Bars?

Lactobacillus sporogenes (bacillus coagulans). It is a stable Lactic Acid forming probiotic that has extensive studies of gut healing effects ranging across gastrointestinal issues, bloating, diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome. This spore-producing bacteria remains dormant in the package and on grocery store shelves, but becomes activated once eaten.  This hardy bacteria strain has a protective shell that helps it survive the acid and bile in your stomach so that it can reach your intestines unharmed.  Once there, the low ph and moisture in your intestines allows it to activate and multiply rapidly.   This is especially true when it has prebiotics there to feed it.

Questions about ingredients:

How are Truth Bars sweetened?

In order to achieve a balance between sweetness and low sugar, Truth Bars are sweetened by a combination of natural sweeteners and real food ingredients.

How many grams of sugar do Truth Bars have?

The number of grams of sugar ranges from 4 grams per bar in the Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch Bar to 5 grams per bar in the rest of the Truth Bar flavors.

Are Truth Bars Made With All-Natural Ingredients?

Yes. Truth Bars are made with 100% all-natural ingredients and contain no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, no artificial sweeteners, and no fillers. Truth Bar ingredients are also non-GMO.

Are Truth Bars Vegan?

Two Truth Bar flavors are vegan. Our Dark Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Raspberry Coconut bars are both 100% Vegan. They're both rich in fiber and essential medium chain fatty acids that are easily digested, which makes them incredibly useful for a quick burst of energy.

Three of our Truth Bars are protein based (10g per bar) and non-vegan. Our Chocolate Almond Crunch, Mint Chocolate Chip and Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch bars feature a Non-Vegan blend of brown rice protein, whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate that supplies essential Amino Acids for a "complete" or "whole" source of protein.

Are Truth Bars 100% gluten free?

Yes. All Truth Bars are 100% gluten free.

Are Truth Bars soy free?

Yes. Though often found in chocolate, the specially formulated dark chocolate coating on all Truth Bars is completely free of soy. (the chocolate coating itself is also sugar free)

Are Truth Bars dairy and lactose free?

Truth Bar's vegan bars (Dark Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate Raspberry Coconut) are dairy and lactose free. Truth Bar's protein bars contain both Whey Protein Isolate and Whey Protein Concentrate.  These whey proteins contain a small percentage of lactose.

What about other allergens?

 If you have allergies, please read the food ingredients on the label carefully or talk to your nutritionist, allergist, or doctor about what is best for you. Also note that though not every Truth Bar contains these ingredients, they are made on equipment shared with peanuts, tree nuts, soy and dairy.

 Are Truth Bars kosher?

Yes. They are certified OU Kosher by the Orthodox Union. 

What is the source of Omega-3's?

Truth Bars contain Omega-3s from white chia seed.

Do Truth Bars contain MCT (medium chain triglyceride) Oil?

MCT Oil can be found in four of our bars: Chocolate Raspberry Coconut, Dark Chocolate Coconut, Mint Chocolate Chip, and Chocolate Almond Crunch.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch contains no MCT oil.

 Where can I find a full list of ingredients?

You can find a full list of ingredients on each bar’s label and product page on truthbar.com. The ingredients can be found by clicking the second tab on each product page.

Where can I find nutrition information?

Each bar’s nutrition facts can also be found on the product pages on truthbar.com. Just click the third tab.

You can also find information on the ingredient page on truthbar.com that outlines key ingredients and their benefits.

Truth Bars & Popular Diets:

Are Truth Bars Keto Friendly?

Keto diets are very low in carbs, high in fat, ideally higher in fiber, and have some balanced amount of protein. The strictest Keto diets require very low to almost no carbs. Truth Bars would not be ideal for the strictest keto diet. But if you are looking for a snack option for a basic or moderate keto diet, Truth Bar's Chocolate Peanut Butter Crunch bar is a great choice -- high in fiber (13g), high in healthy fat (12g), moderate protein (10g) and relatively lower net carbs (6g).

How many Weight Watchers points does a Truth Bar have?

Truth Bars have approximately 8-9 points per bar.

Are Truth Bars Paleo Friendly?

Paleo diets in their strictest form include foods that hunter-gatherers would have eaten. This means no foods that were not available to them (like sugar, processed foods, artificial ingredients) and lots of fruits, grains and lean protein. Paleo diets also restrict grains, legumes and dairy. Truth Bars, while gluten-free and only containing real food ingredients, would not fit in the Paleo diet in its strictest form as they contain some sugar (4-5g).

Other Questions:

What is the shelf life of Truth Bars?

Truth Bars have a shelf life of 12 months from the date of production. We make our bars in small batches, which should ensure that our retailer's shelves are stocked with fresh bars when rotated correctly.

Do Truth Bars need to be refrigerated?

No. This type of probiotic is not in a live state on the shelf, it is activated only after it's eaten. For this reason, Truth Bars do not need to be refrigerated.

Questions about buying Truth Bars

 How do I find out if Truth Bars are sold in a store near me?

 You can use the Store Locator on truthbar.com to search by zip code, city or state to find a store near you.

 What if there aren't yet stores near me that carry Truth Bars?

 First, you can talk to your grocery store or health food store's manager and ask them to stock Truth Bars in their store. They can contact us directly and we can help. Meanwhile, Truth Bars can be purchased on amazon.com/truthbar and truthbar.com.

 What is your return policy?

 100% satisfaction or your money back. You can reach out to us at info@truthbar.com and we will help.

 

 Please let us know if you have a question that is not listed above.
Simply write to us at 
info@truthbar.com or orders@truthbar.com. We are happy to answer any questions!