Keeping kids sweet - without the sugar hit

9:56 am on 24 March 2016

Easter's just a hop away and if you ask kids what that means, their answer is likely to be chocolate.

Cadbury has produced around 40 million eggs and bunnies for the country, with marshmallow eggs the keen favourite.

easter eggs

Photo: 123 RF

But with talk of a sugar tax and removing sugary drinks from schools, how bad can an Easter treat really be?

Mothers whom RNZ National spoke to were not at all excited about Easter, and were concerned about the amount of chocolate their children would eat.

"We just get our kids one little thing, but its the eggs they get from everyone else that's the problem, they end up with a month's supply," one mother said.

"It wouldn't be so bad but they are constantly given sugary treats, every event has a lolly scramble and they are rewarded with lollies for being good as school."

New Zealand Nutrition foundation dietician Sarah Hanrahan said the sugar content varied between eggs.

"Obviously the ones filled with marshmallow, caramel and lollies will have more sugar than the hollow ones."

"My advice is just keep it for Easter Day, kids don't need eggs building up to the day let them enjoy it for the day and let that be the end of it," Ms Hanrahan said.

She said parents needed to make sure children only get enough for one day and do not stockpile eggs.

"Mix it up as well have the chocolate eggs, but you can also get little plastic ones which you can fill up with stickers, they get just as much excitement from that than the chocolate."

Cadbury's does not have any sugar-free options on offer in New Zealand but smaller chocolatiers such as Wellington's Schoc Chocolates do.

Owner Murray Langham said demand for their sugar-free eggs was increasing.

"We've always done sugar-free blocks, they are basically for diabetics, they taste just as good and have the same sweetness as the ones with sugar.

"Their popularity is increasing we had a guy come in yesterday and buy 10 of them but they still make up a small percentage of our overall chocolate sales," Mr Langham said.

He said it's the sugar in chocolate which gives it the lovely taste and the smoothness as it goes down your throat.

"I just think you need to look for quality when buying Easter eggs, make sure it has a high percentage of cocoa, like anything else it's about moderation."