How Candy Brings Us Together

POSTED ON DECEMBER 28, 2021   |   BY JOSH ROTHSTEIN

How-Candy-Brings-Us-Together 1220285380

Candy really brings us together in a special way. Candy is somewhat of a magical, universal language to people across the world. To really understand the magic behind candy, ask anyone what their favorite candy bar is. We guarantee that you’ll instantly have something fun and exciting to talk about! You could even take it a step further and offer them a piece of candy!

Just like the candy bowl at the office, or holiday sweets at a family member’s house, candy is a great way to break the ice and make people feel welcome. We all know that most people can’t resist a sweet treat. Candy has the ability to connect all sorts of people together, without even saying a word.

As the holiday season is upon us, we thought we’d take a deeper look at one of the very few things that just about everybody loves… You guessed it… It’s candy.

You know we’d be lying if we didn’t tell you that candy is our favorite thing too! But what is it about candy that everybody loves? Is “candy happiness” a real thing? Are there actual health benefits to eating candy? Let’s find out!

How does candy make people happy?

Sweets are made for the good times in life. It has been engrained in our human culture for centuries. Sometimes our coach would reward us by taking us out for ice cream after the big game. Christmas time is spent making holiday sweets, like white chocolate peppermint bark, cinnamon rolls and fudge at your grandparent’s house. Halloween is full of all the candy anyone could possibly imagine, yes, even the candy corn! The Easter Bunny leaves you chocolate eggs in your Easter basket. You celebrate your birthday with cake and ice cream, or even better yet, ice cream cake!

Sweet-Celebration-Birthday-Cake-Family 777018190

Some of our most enjoyable moments are focused around candy and our biggest holidays have their own sets of holiday treats! Since we enjoy candy and sweets at some of our happiest moments throughout life, our brains have intrinsically linked these sugary foods and beverages with our favorite moments of happiness throughout our lifetime.

This neural link explains why we tend to feel better when someone gives us a nice piece of candy, even when we aren’t celebrating anything. The look, taste, smell, and texture of candy are all linked in our brains to feel-good memories of love, comfort, happiness and time spent with our families.

That’s why, when you eat certain candies, you are instantly bombarded with nostalgic memories from your childhood. For example, every time I eat a candy cane, I am reminded of my grandmother’s house around Christmas time. These aren’t just a few images in my mind, but the smells and sounds as well.

Candy canes instantly make me think of decorating the Christmas tree at her home, the hot chocolate she made with molten marshmallows on top, and the sound of her voice telling the family: “dinner is ready!”. I can even remember the feel of the orange shag carpeting she had in the living room on my bare feet and the smell of the fireplace that kept us all extra toasty. These memories will always be linked in my mind with the candy cane for me, and it’s been this way for decades.

So, not only do candies act as sweet place-holders for special memories in our mind, but they actually have some very real psychological and physiological benefits as well.

Let’s explore these in more detail.

Are there real health benefits to eating candy?

There is something truly special about candy. Not only can it bring back some of these feel-good memories of the past, but sweets also make us feel a sense of safety, relaxation and happiness. Enjoying a sweet treat every now and then is a great way to benefit both your physical and mental health!

Candy-Happiness-Happy-Moments-In-Life 704876725

Why do I feel so good when I eat candy?

Your brain is a magical device. While your brain only makes up 2% of your body’s total weight, it uses 50% of the glucose energy in your body. When you eat sugary foods, the sugar rapidly enters your bloodstream and gets transported to the brain. Since there are so many neurons in the brain tissue, it needs a lot of energy to keep functioning properly.

As a reward, the brain releases dopamine which is also known as the “happy hormone”. Small amounts of this chemical can be a boost to your own mental health. This reward system is intended to make you feel good when you do something your brain likes. So, it’s kind of like your brain is telling you to: “do it again”. Just make sure you don’t overdo it!

Since it’s the holidays, and hot chocolate season is in the air, let’s discuss some of the numerous physical benefits of chocolate.

Chocolate and especially dark chocolate have some incredible physical health benefits. A study by the British Medical Journal found that regularly consuming dark chocolate can help reduce the risk of a heart attack by 39%. Another study by the American Academy of Neurology showed that eating one chocolate bar a week can reduce your risk of dying from a stroke by 49%. Talk about some sweet rewards!

Dark chocolate is also incredibly high in antioxidants and a chemical known as GECGC, which is a potent weapon against some types of cancer cells. Of all its beneficial properties, dark chocolate has more antioxidants, flavanols and polyphenols than any other fruits tested, including acai berries and blueberries.

Eating candy can actually help you live longer too! One long-term scientific study has shown that if you eat candy at least a few times a month, you will live longer than people who didn’t eat any candy. It’s just one more way for you to feel good about enjoying your favorite treats every once in a while!

How candy brings us all together.

Candy-Brings-Families-Together-Redstone-Foods 723339178

In the closing days of 2021, we think it would be a good idea for us all to focus on the things that make us happy! Even a simple pleasure like enjoying some of our favorite holiday treats can really go a long way for our physical and mental health. Candy truly brings us together and provides little moments of happiness that everyone can experience. Candy just makes us feel good, and everyone can relate to that.

With that in mind, if you’re looking for any last-minute gift ideas for that hard-to-shop-for person on your list, the gift of candy is one just about everybody will love! Candy around Christmas time is a tradition that goes back for centuries of human history. Tis the season to be jolly, so why not share the gift of candy with your friends and family this holiday season!