Evidence has arrived from the University of Northumbria in Newcastle that people who chew gum throughout tests of both long-term and short-term memory got much better scores than people who didn’t!
75 adults were bombarded by 20 min of memory and attention tests. One third of them chewed gum throughout, another third mimicked the chewing action but with no gum and the final third were the control group and did no chewing at all.
The gum-chewers scored 24% higher than the control group on short-term memory tests and 36% higher on long-term memory tests. Spatial working memory was also more accurate.
It seems that Japanese researchers have demonstrated the link between chewing and increased activity in the hippocampus, an area of the brain important for memory.
But no one seems to know why!
There’s plenty of speculation though.
Recent research has shown that chewing causes the release of insulin by the body, in anticipation of digesting the food expected to arrive soon, and it is thought that insulin receptors in the hippocampus may be involved in memory.
But maybe there’s an even simpler explanation. Chewing also increases the heart rate, which improves delivery of oxygen in the brain.
So! What you waiting for? Get chewing!!