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Mars puts Snickers bars on a diet
February 16th, 2012
11:36 AM ET

Mars puts Snickers bars on a diet

Have you ever stood near the checkout of a grocery store and stared at the rack of chocolate bars, debating whether anyone would judge you for buying the king-size?

You know the regular size is enough to satisfy your craving, but the bigger candy bar is only 40 cents more and it just... Looks. So. Good.

Worry no more - Mars, Inc. is going taking that decision out of your hands. The company that produces M&Ms, 3 Musketeers, Snickers and Twix bars has vowed to stop shipping any Mars chocolate products that exceed 250 calories per portion by the end of 2013.

Right now a regular Snickers bar has 280 calories and each Twix cookie bar has 130 calories (but let's be honest, who eats just one?).

Mars will most likely stop producing its king-sized candy bars all together since the large Snickers bar weighs in at 510 calories.

"We have a responsibility to help our consumers and the pets they love lead healthy lives," Mars said in a statement on its website. "We are committed to making sure the products we offer, and the ingredients they contain, can fit into a balanced diet."

Mars also produces Dove chocolate bars, multiple kinds of pet food, several gum brands and Uncle Ben's rice products.

This move is part of an agreement Mars signed with Michelle Obama's Partnership for a Healthier America. Mars is part of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, a group of 16 manufacturers who have pledged to reduce 1.5 trillion calories by the end of 2015 through lower-calorie options and reducing portion sizes.

"America's food and beverage companies have a strong track record of innovation and providing consumers with healthier products," said Lisa Gable, executive director of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation in a press release. "The Foundation's member companies are giving Americans tools to reduce calorie consumption."

Mars' statement goes on to note that the company has removed 97% of the trans fat in their chocolate products and plans to "reduce sodium levels in all Mars Food products globally by 25 percent by 2015."

Mars has not addressed the total number of fat grams in each product or the amount of sugar - factors most experts agree play a big role in weight gain, especially for children.

You can check out the nutrition info for Mars' products at www.marshealthyliving.com.


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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.