Gamer Grub: Performance Snack Food?

If Keith Mullin has his way, we might soon see a sixth food group in the USDA’s Food Pyramid: Cognitive Performance Snacks. Mullin calls his invention "Gamer Grub" and maintains that it is “formulated to boost your brain and speed reaction times.”

Gamer Grub will be available in four flavors considered to be popular with gamers ("Strategy Chocolate," "Action Pizza," "Racing Wasabi," and "Sports PB&J" (that’s peanut butter and jelly to the uninitiated), but two features will set this snack apart from the chips, pizza, popcorn, and similar snack foods on which gamers are known to subsist: a proprietary mix of vitamins and other supplements, and a unique “delivery system” that will enable one to consume the product in the midst of gaming without leaving one’s fingers, keyboard, and mouse slick with grease.

The delivery system comes in the form of flip-top lid on top of an ergonomically shaped plastic container that is easily gripped with one hand. The supplements range from Vitamin A (for improved eyesight) to Magnesium (for the maintenance of muscle and nerve functions) to Choline (for muscle reactions). While the Gamer Grub website seems to make these claims in a tongue-cheek-fashion, it also provides citations to scholarly research to back its nutritional claims.

Mullin, a sometime gamer himself, originally developed the Gamer Grub concept for a General Mills’ snack inventors’ contest. The cereal-maker declared Mullin’s entry a winner, but ultimately decided against manufacturing the product; so Mullin decided to develop it himself. This is not his first invention.

“I work in product development,” Mullin told us when we contacted him this morning. “I’ve invented and licensed several toy products, and I invented a pet toy called the Bark-N-Bat. This is the first time I’ve done a food product, and it’s definitely exciting.”

Mullin describes Gamer Grub as a “functional food,” a concept he says he did not invent (here’s Wikipedia’s definition). “Functional food is basically a food product that enhances a lifestyle or a health condition,” Mullin said. “It’s a very large food category.” Mullin also advised us not to confuse his product with the category of food supplements. “The difference between a supplement and a natural food,” he said, “is that the FDA generally recognizes the ingredients in a natural food to be safe.”

Gamers attending the “E for All” videogame event in Los Angeles later this week will be able to sample Gamer Grub, and Mullin promised to ship some product directly to us, as well. We’ll let you know what we think of it. Everyone else will have to wait until the product reaches retailers’ shelves some time in 2009. Mullin has not yet settled on a retail price for the product.

Note: This story was updated October 1 with a link to the Gamer Grub website and pricing information.

  • emp
    Sounds simple and dumb enough that it may be actually be worth a damn in the end.
  • wow....

    you want a performance boost drink red bull...

    you want to be normal... and not have any weird side affects... don't do anything...

    this is so dumb... the funny part is people will buy it... and then when the first game they play they get 2 more kills... they'll be like... omfg... this stuff really works
  • aznguy0028
    LOL @ thogrom's comment

    very funny! i couldn't agree more with you. apparently people never heard of eating healthy such as fruits/vegetables/grains and things like that. if you ate all those things, you wouldn't need to buy this stuff, if you actually do.

    i guess it's better than potato chips and your 2 liter of pepsi you're drinking when you're gaming but it's not really something major.
  • Aerobernardo
    That´s the nerdiest thing I´ve ever seen in Tom´s
  • alvine
    It just shows how dumb people are. If you want to be "good" in games you need to exercise and eat well. Your mental health has to be in good shape meaning No smoking green tabacco while playing on lanparties is not good. And yes I done that and I actually suck more, when it comes to any kinds of drinks it distracts me and makes me want to go pee pee instead of aiming. Food? Makes your fingers messy and keyboard sticky so no I don't eat while I'm playing.
  • nita222
    Personally, I don't know many gamers who would opt for a bag of carrots and celery, or better yet an orange to snack on while gaming. To me, this sounds a lot healthier than most foods that gamers eat...
  • aziraphale
    What a pile of crap. And there will be people actually buying this shite...
  • randomizer
    I wonder how much it will cost. I think I'll just have a nice cup of brewed coffee instead.
  • noobe1981
    Lmao this isn't dumb. Its freaking smart well if it tastes good, and a reasonable price anyways lol. Its really simple. Thats why it would work. Ya eat an orange while playing a game hahahaha. Don't get me wrong personally I love fruit but their not really practicle to eat while playing a game. Although some vegies are *celery, carrots, and yes I like both of them to*. This is just another healthy alternative to eating potatoe chips..etc What so stupid about that lol.
  • giovanni86
    Sounds fine by me, i tend to stick to Monster energy drinks, chips, pizza, carl's jr., maybe some 7 eleven hot dogs with everything on it. But this idea sounds pretty cool, if its priced at a good price like cheaper then a monster can i might consider it a option or i just might buy both hahaha. I agree with noobe1981, its a smart move. No one has yet to call something Gamer Grub, it will definitely sell. BUt saying that it must TASTE good, if not then it won't sell. If it tastes like monster hell i'd buy it hahaha.