Stay Alert: Caffeinated Military Gum for the Masses

Stay Alert Gum is now called Military Energy Gum.

When looking for a daily pick-me-up most people are limited to one of two choices, either drink Coffee or down an Energy Drink. Either choice provides a reasonable boost to a daily routine but what about the times when a beverage isn’t a viable option?

What about the times when you want to be able to carry the caffeine on hand, whether you’re out snowboarding, in class, at your desk, driving to work, living life. There are just too many times when mugs and liquids are a hassle.

In the past we’ve done reviews of caffeinated candies and ThinkGums in search of the Holy Grail of hand held caffeine, but for what could be the first time, I think it’s been found. Stay Alert is the new bull on the block, and this bull has some serious bawls.

I don’t know how many times Stay Alert has caught my eye in the past while I scrolled through our Caffeine Food Index. Not only does the gum have 100 mg of caffeine per piece, it was also designed and approved for US Military use. Not knowing what a gum of that strength would be like, I resisted trying it until the day that fate decided to step in.

While browsing through a local mart of mine I came across the famous (or infamous) gum and my inner Caffeine Informer took hold. Needless to say, there was no escaping what needed to be done and the gum was bought.

The Rush

Two pieces was more than enough to feel the effects, the biggest difference between the usual energy drink rush and a caffeinated gum rush is that much more caffeine is absorbed through the blood vessels under the tongue than through the stomach. The package states that within 15 minutes of chewing, 99% of the caffeine has been absorbed. Step out of the way Redline Power Rush, if your looking for a speedy caffeine fix there’s no beating this.

200mg absorbed straight to the head in 15 minutes definitely gives a noticeable head change. A constriction can be felt quickly around the eyes and tongue, leaving a numb feeling for the duration of the gum which can be somewhat pleasant, given the taste of the gum. The gum comes only in cinnamon flavor but even that only lasts for the first five minutes. After that you’re left on your own, just you and the bitter, almost sickening flavor of caffeine.

Sick

A word of caution to anyone wanting to try this gum, multiple people I talked to said that in the 10 minutes following the 5 minute cinnamon flavor they felt what they could only describe as “sick”. Not a vomit sort of sick but they said it was similar to feeling the need to gag. I assured them they would be fine and to stick it out and all of them ended up loving it. If the gum is bitter it means there is still caffeine left to absorb, once the caffeine is gone it will be a mild enjoyable taste for as long as you choose to chew.

I really did enjoy the product tremendously, in fact, the gum I’m chewing while writing this is from my second order of Stay Alert. In the span of two weeks I ended up using my entire 30 piece pack, most of the time using one piece at a time instead of two. 100 mg is perfect for exercising, studying, test taking, and doesn’t bring on any jittery feelings.

The gum can be bought online from Amazon in sizes as little as 30 pieces (costing around 10$ including shipping) and as big as 120 pieces (35$ per pack). This is the only caffeinated gum I would recommend and it has been the only gum to energize me like it promised.

Overall Score (5/5)
Review by Josh (blog: Cubicalism and Coffee)

Written by James Foster, last updated on June 30, 2016