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Science and Nutrition

Obesity is a complex health issue with a wide variety of contributing factors, including excess calorie consumption, sedentary lifestyles, lack of exercise and time pressures on both families and individuals.


grocery_bagIt is important to remember that candy and chocolate are treats, snacks or desserts. The key to maintaining a balanced diet and appropriate weight with confections, as with all foods, is to consume them in moderation, as part of an active lifestyle.

With confectionery contributing less than two percent of the average child's and adult's daily calories, we think most consumers already understand that confectionery can add a great deal of enjoyment without being a major source of calories.

However, the confectionery industry does work to provide consumers with the information they need to understand the role of confectionery in the diet, while offering a variety of options to choose the confectionery products best suited to individual lifestyles and needs. Examples include small, “snack-size,” or “bite-size” confections as well as low-fat, non-fat and sugar-free products.

Jumping Rope

We also understand that it is important for consumers to have all the information they need to make decisions about the foods eat. That's why nutrition labeling appears on all packaged candy products.

Finally, as members of the food industry, we have an important role to play in helping people recognize the contribution of diet and activity to consumers’ health and well-being. One important initiative involves working with the American Academy of Family Physicians’ Foundation on a brochure to help parents talk with children about healthy eating, A Parent’s Guide to Talking to Your Children about Diet and Nutrition. Organizations such as the Boys and Girls Clubs, the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and the National Association of Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) use the brochure as a resource for parents, teachers and community healthy and wellness programs.

Want more specific help on how candy can fit into your lifestyle? Take a look at Treat Smarts: A Guide to Nutrition and Activity, which provides easy-to-use guidance for parents on nutritional information for popular kinds of candy, activities to keep the family healthy and interactive ways to make mealtime fun.

Here are some other resources you may find helpful:

From the USDA:

  • USDA's MyPyramid.gov helps determine how much of what variety of foods you or your children need

From the Food Information Council:

Other Resources:


Top Resources

Use these resources to learn more about including candy in a healthy lifestyle.

Fun Facts

Fun Facts About Candy Canes

  • For 200 years, the candy cane came only in one color — white. The red stripes did not appear until sometime around the turn of the 20th century.
  • National Candy Cane Day is celebrated December 26th in the United States
  • Each year about 1.2 billion candy canes are made.
  • Considered a seasonal item, 90 percent of candy canes are sold between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
  • Candy canes are the number one selling non-choclate candy in the month of December
  • The biggest single week for candy cane sales is the second week in December. This is likely attributable to that fact that most people decorate their Christmas trees that week.

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