An apple a day keeps the doctor away, and apparently so does a little candy. (Shh, don’t tell your dentist.)
While too much refined sugar is associated with health problems, there’s plenty of evidence that moderate candy consumption can actually boost your wellbeing in a number of ways. Anyone with a sweet tooth already knows how some sour gummies or a piece of chocolate can reduce stress and improve your mood. But medicine is on our side, too.
Scroll down to learn the surprising health benefits of candy!
Eat candy, live longer.
A 1998 study on healthy college-age men found that those who regularly indulged in candy actually lived longer than those who didn’t. Life really is sweet!
The study didn’t distinguish between sugar candy and chocolate, so some of the life-extending effects may be caused by the antioxidant effects of chocolate phenols. Still, the evidence clearly shows that men who ate candy 1 to 3 times a month lived longer than those who ate it more regularly.
The most surprising part? Candy eaters of any frequency lived longer than men who never ate candy. So next time your dentist suggests a moratorium on your candy habit, tell them it’s for your health.
Chocolate can protect your heart from disease.
Good news, chocolate lovers. You probably already know chocolate can improve your mood, lower stress, curb cravings, and protect against stroke and dementia. But there’s also direct evidence of the heart health benefits of candy made from chocolate.
Wine-drinkers sing the praises of moderate red wine consumption as a defense against heart disease, but did you know chocolate carries similar benefits? 41 g of chocolate contains the same amount of phenol as a glass of red wine, along with the same antioxidant properties that promote heart health. Chocolate may even reduce the risk of dangerous heart arrhythmia.
Because of its higher flavanol content, dark chocolate contains more antioxidant properties than milk chocolate. These benefits may be linked not just to protection against heart disease, but also decreased blood pressure and even reduction of insulin sensitivity.
Chew gum to cheer up and buckle down.
If the health benefits of candy are surprising, the benefits of chewing gum are downright shocking. Psychology Today cites evidence that even a piece of chewing gum can improve your mood, reduce stress and pain, increase your focus, and even boost serotonin levels.
This is great news for anyone with a sweet tooth who’s looking to reduce their sugar intake for health reasons. Next time you need a pick-me-up at the office, try reaching for a sweet stick of gum.
Sugar can boost focus.
Most afternoons, snacks are an absolute must for getting through the end of the work day. That makes sense since your brain requires sugar – specifically glucose – to function well. When you’re low on glucose, which helps you complete tasks that require lots of willpower, you can feel groggy, foggy, and forgetful.
While there’s some disagreement on exactly how sugar affects the brain, it’s true that a shot of sugar can help you feel a boost in willpower. That translates to greater focus and productivity in the short term.
There’s even some evidence that just the taste of sugar can help improve focus. Since being in a good mood can help us feel more energized, it makes sense that something sweet can give us the final push we need to get through a difficult task.
Take care of yourself with Candy Club.
Now that you’re up to speed on the health benefits of candy, there’s no reason not to treat yourself. Candy Club takes the work out of sweet self-care by sending specially curated, gourmet candy boxes straight to your door. Choose between mostly sweets and mostly sours, and treat yourself or a loved one with the gift of candy today.