WUFT News

What’s So Divisive About Candy Corn?

By on October 28th, 2013

They’re white, orange and yellow, and these triangular shaped candies are perhaps some of the most divisive sweets ever created: candy corn.

On one side, Yahoo! recently announced that candy corn is the most searched-for sweet in the U.S. this Halloween season. On the other side, NetBase’s 2012 Brand Passion Index report found that the feelings about the sweet were “the most polarized” and that candy corn generated “the most negative feelings.”

In fact, candy corn is made from only eight ingredients: sugar, corn syrup, confectioner’s glaze, natural/artificial flavorings, salt, egg whites, honey glycerin, mineral oil, and carnauba wax.

According to Keith Schneider, a professor at the University of Florida’s Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, the most demonized ingredient is the carnauba wax.

“It’s derived from a natural plant source,” Schneider said. “It’s used in pharmaceutical applications, car wax and also in candy coatings. I think because the word ‘car’ is in the name of the product, people always assume it’s bad and industrial. But again, it’s just a wax that’s used for many purposes and in many different industries.”

Dr. Linda Bobroff, a professor at the University of Florida’s Department of Family Youth and Community Sciences, said the only thing people need to hate candy corn for is its ability to increase body weight and damage teeth.

“Chewing on lots of candy over a period of time will soak the sugar around your teeth and can cause tooth decay,” Bobroff said.

Both Schneider and Bobroff said that consuming the holiday treat in moderation is fine.

“Articles online (about ingredients being dangerous) may say otherwise,” Schneider said. “But many of those are based on questionable science.”


This entry was posted in Health and Science and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Health and Science

Molly McCann, 66, traps a wild calico cat Sunday evening. She works with Operation Catnip, a local organization that cares for Gainesville’s community cat population by spaying or neutering and vaccinating them before releasing them back to their turfs.

Operation Catnip Launches Website, Educates On Trap And Neuter Methods

Gainesville non-profit dedicated to sterilizing and vaccinating stray cats creates a website to help other communities take care of un-owned cats.


The Florida Department of Children and Families recently included a new heat map on their child fatality website. The heat map shows communities in Florida affected by child fatalities.

Rise In Duval County Infant Fatalities Increases Need For Awareness And Transparency

Infant fatalities are on the rise in Duval County, but the Department of Children and Families is strategizing how to bring awareness to parents and caretakers about unsafe sleeping practices. It has made resources and information available to the community about past child fatalities and how to prevent them.


dogpalsy

Community Provides Companion For Cerebral Palsy Child

Olivia Pitts, 3, has lived with cerebral palsy her whole life. Now, her community has pulled together to provide her with a service dog..


Jessica Grobman, born HIV-positive, said she believes better sex education in Florida schools would help children grow up safer and healthier. “If education was just more encouraged, it definitely could be a great outcome,” she said.  Photo courtesy of Jessica Grobman.

HIV Positive Student Advocates Comprehensive Sex Education

Jessica Grobman was born with HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus. But it was not until she learned about HIV and other sexually transmitted infections in middle school that she began to understand she was different.


FTN-feature

UF Graduate Students Offer Free Therapy To Those In Need

Volunteer graduate students studying clinical health psychology staff the Free Therapy Night clinic at Gainesville Community Ministry. The equal access clinic focuses specifically on mental health.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments