Glee Gum pointed me to new research from the National Center for Biotechnology Information that shows chewing gum five minutes before cognitive tests improved performance.
The benefits, however, persisted only for the first 15-20 minutes of the testing session, and did not extend to all cognitive domains. Researchers noted that chewing gum during the test likely doesn’t help because it’s a distraction for the brain.
Regardless, the news still is promising for gum makers and school children alike.
The authors believe the benefits are a result of “mastication-induced arousal,” or in laymen’s term’s, brain stimulation.
This new data should be more than enough to spur schools into rethinking their no tolerance gum policies. But wait, there’s more!
Rev7 maker Revolymer claims to use a new “removable and degradable” gum base in their product. As my editor Bernard Pacyniak reported in the November Candy Industry, the UK-based company claims the gum disintegrates into a fine powder using mild water and agitation.
Viola! Suddenly the problem of sticky desks is solved! And janitors everywhere can sleep easier.
In fact, I think all this new information is so persuasive that not only should schools stop banning gum in the classrooms, they should start encouraging it. And what better market for gum companies than a group of people sitting around wishing they were chewing on something sweet?
I can already see the inevitable tag lines: Master astronomy with Eclipse! Let us help you get Extra credit! Solve trigonometry with Trident! And of course, get double points with Doublemint!
I really hope all this catches on - if only to save the poor souls who, in an effort to hide any evidence they’ve been chewing gum, resort to taking a deep gulp as the teacher walks by. If all goes according to plan, that same kid soon could be earning bonus points for blowing bubbles right next to the teacher’s desk. What a seriously sweet day that would be.
And, of course, gum companies wouldn’t have to stop with schools. If chewing gum before a big test really does help, then surely there are other people about to enter high stress situations who would be interested in reaping the benefits.
Fly better with Orbit! Driving test? Ace it when you take it in Stride! We promise your Bazooka won’t misfire! Job interview? You’ll want to be seen with Dentyne!
Thus, once again, confections will make the world a better place to live in.