Chewing gum reduces stress and improves memory. Really?

BusinessWeek reports that studies sponsored by the world's largest chewing gum maker Wrigley show that chewing gum "activates certain chemicals in the brain that help improve short- and long-term memory, and even helps reduce stress."

The studies are small, involving less than 100 people and Wrigley has not promoted the results because the studies "had not been peer-reviewed." Pubmed returns 15 articles to the query "chewing gum, memory." One study claims that "recent reports suggest that enhancement of memory performance while chewing gum is a fairly robust phenomenon." Appetite, 2004 Oct.

So, is gum a health food now (if it is food at all)?


Wrigley Chews Over Some Surprising News. Pallavi Gogoi.
Chewing gum improves memory.
20 Ways to Get and Stay Happy. Time, 2007.
Gum: The New Health Food? WSJ Health Blog, 2007.
Children chewing xylitol gum were 25% less likely to develop acute ear infections. NYTimes, 2011.
Image source: Chewing gum from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


  1. At least since high school, I've chewed gum during every exam (most recently the MCAT). Don't know if it helps but I like it.


  2. Gum chewing - it's my saving grace sometimes.

    When I need to speak publicly, or whenever I have any social situation that I find stressful, I will find a piece of gum to chew on. Sure, it's probably a social no-no to do so in these situations, but kept to a minimum, no one will notice.

    It's really amazing what it can do for you. Take for instance, have you ever had problems conveying your true facial expressions when you're nervous? You know, your smile falters in those akward situations, and all goes to hell afterwards. I noticed a long time ago that chewing gum in these situations (inconspicously of course) always alleviated that problem - my smiles always felt like smiles, and so on.

    I've got a pretty large speaking engagement Wed. morning. I plan on chewing a pack of gum to the minute before I start my presentation, and continue chewing if the crowd is of the right mix.

    Either way, I hope it continues to help me as it has in the past! And for those of you who haven't tried it, and you find yourself in stressful situations, why don't you give it a shot?

    Take care!


  3. I agree, gum does help you concentrate and it even improves memory. For those people that want proof go to . There are lots of peer-reviewed scientific papers cited about how and why chewing gum improves concentration. Most people believe chewing gum improves concentration by increasing blood-flow to your brain.

    Think Gum is a gum designed to enhance the brain-boosting effects that eveyone already loves about chewing gum. It is great for students and really helps many people concentrate in class. It contains brian-boosting herbal eftracts like vinpocetine, ginkgo biloba and bacopa and has the added kick of caffiene. Give it a try and it will blow ordinary chewing gum away.

  4. im in 7th grade and im doing a persuasive essay and im doing it on chewing gum and trying to take the rule that we cant have gum away

  5. A new study, sponsored by the Wrigley Science Institute, has discovered that chewing gum during stressful situations can reduce levels of salivary cortisol, lead to a reduction in percieved levels of anxiety, improve alertness and dramatically improve performance on stressful tasks.The study examined whether chewing gum is capable of reducing induced anxiety and/or acute psychological stress while participants performed a battery of 'multi-tasking' activities. The use of chewing gum was associated with higher alertness, reduced anxiety and stress, and improvement in overall performance on multi-tasking activitie

  6. i've noticed that when i chew gum i'm always feeling up for social school work has been high qualaty whenever im chewing gum.
    i think gum is a miricle!

  7. Many coach and footballer in soccer game chew a gum i guess it help to relieve the stress cuz when i play soccer i experiment my self to chew gum then it was make me more focus on game.garn.

  8. Interesting point. Perhaps it works.

  9. wow. i chew gum but i didn't know all that, its pretty intense!