By Bridget Reed

Does Sour Candy Help With Anxiety?

TikTok is always buzzing with something new, and there isn’t always a ton of truth behind the trending claims. But we got super excited when we heard that sour candy — literally our favorite thing on earth — might have some surprise benefits beyond just being delicious.

We decided to dive deeper into our heroes’ stories to see if they know one way or the other: Does sour candy actually help with feelings of stress?

A Little Backstory

Quinnie the Quokka puts up with a LOT from her grump of an anti-hero partner, Hank. Most people think that because she’s always so sunny, she just doesn’t mind when Hank honeybadgers out and acts like a self-centered jerk, but that’s a common misconception.

You see, Quinnie hasn’t always been all rainbows and sunshine. She had to work on herself to achieve that level of cheer, and, just like everyone else, she still has her tough moments. 

Believe it or not, Quinnie has dealt with nerves since long before the Final Boss was unleashed back into the realm. That’s why she knows so much about sour fruits — channeling her focus into research is the only thing that can calm her down sometimes. 

That’s also why she’s so forgiving of Hank when he acts like a total dingus. She’s developing a theory that Hank might just be dealing with a bit of stress himself, but she doesn’t want to bring it up to him until she’s sure.

What Are the Symptoms of Stress?

Hank has always been intense, but Quinnie notices that he only gets more intense the deeper into their journey they get.

She starts paying attention to when his temper seems shorter, and his rudeness seems ruder, and she notices some telltale signs and symptoms of stress:

  • He gets super irritable whenever he’s feeling defensive about his role in unleashing the Final Boss. 
  • Especially when he doesn’t feel like he’s doing a good job of fixing his mistake.
  • And his irritability goes off the charts anytime he’s about to go into battle with a miniboss.

So basically, Hank uses his grumpiness to deflect from his stress. But his lone-wolf act is getting him nowhere fast, and it certainly isn’t making his path to redemption any easier.

Quinnie knows there’s a lot going on inside of Hank that he doesn’t want to talk about, so she starts figuring out ways to help him until he’s ready to help himself in the interest of their mission. Plus, she actually considers Hank a great friend and she wants to support him — but don’t tell him that.

Can Sour Candy Help With Stress?

When they encounter Shellsea on the sandy shores of Crockweiler Public Beach, Hank jumps into action to take her down. But he’s out of his element in the sand and can’t seem to find his footing.

Quinnie sees it all: Hank’s eyes go wide, his shoulders tense up, and he basically just freezes right there in the heat of battle. 

Fortunately for Hank, Quinnie’s been paying attention and she came prepared for this moment. She pulls a secret stash of Level 3 Cranberries out of her pouch and tosses them to Hank. He munches them down, sour-powers up, and snaps back to focus just in time to absolutely destroy Shellsea and collect the Level 2 Blueberries she’s hoarding.

Battle Debrief

Hank asks Quinnie how she knew that would work, and she explains:

  • It turns out that sour candy can actually help when you’re feeling stressed because it acts as a sensory distraction that can help you break out of the scary thought spiral and bring you back to the present moment.
  • When you aren’t in a battle, you can try including the sour candy in more extensive grounding techniques like the 5-4-3-2-1 Method by noticing five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.

Hank admits that it feels like the weight of the world is on his shoulders, and it’s all his fault. Quinnie says, “Hey, I feel like that sometimes too, and I didn’t even unleash unspeakable despair across my entire realm by opening a cursed relic that very obviously shouldn’t have been opened … er, um, I mean, it’s understandable is all.”

Hank just rolls his eyes and wanders off toward their next adventure.

A Quick Fix

So it looks like eating sour candy to help with feelings of stress isn’t just a TikTok trend after all. 

While munching on sour candy can help bring you back to the present moment by distracting you from an anxious thought spiral, it’s important to know that it’s only going to be helpful in the short term. Basically, it might help you get through the battle, but it won’t win the war. 

Fortunately, there are plenty of other steps you can take to tackle ongoing stress and nervousness on deeper and more long-lasting levels. There are simple steps like drinking more water, doing some yoga stretches, or calming meditations — really anything to reduce added stress on your body and mind. 

And there are some more involved steps, like digging deep in therapy to address the root cause of your anxiety. Stress can happen to anyone for any number of reasons. 

You don’t have to literally bear the weight of the world on your shoulders to justify having anxious thoughts. We’re all just out here doing the best we can, and reaching out for support when you need it is just about the coolest and bravest thing you can do.

Even the grumpiest honeybadger we know accepted a delightful quokka’s help, and he’s super glad that he did — even if he would never tell her so.

Sources:

Symptoms - Generalised anxiety disorder in adults | NHS

Sour Power: Can Candy Help Stave off Panic and Anxiety Attacks? | USU

5-4-3-2-1 Coping Technique for Anxiety | University of Rochester Medical Center

Treatment of anxiety disorders | National Library of Medicine