A recent critical study by the National Gingerbread Amputee Foundation reported 99.2% of gingerbread people become amputees during their lifetime. This surprised many gingerbread people who never considered they could one day belong to that demographic.
“It’s a shocking statistic,” said Danna Rhizome, spokesperson for the foundation. “We surveyed thousands of gingerbread [people] and found out many of these injuries occur during the holiday season. It’s a traumatic time for many to have their limbs lopped off.”
Apparently, amidst the jingle of bells, kids this time of year are drawn to cookies with protrusions and love just munching them off without much thought.
“I love biting off their legs first! Right, then left, and then each of their arms!” said 6-year-old serial gingerbread biter Zoe Clove. “I like eating them the zigzag way!” said 5-year-old Damien Ehrman, a gingerbread tormentor who has creatively dismembered and devoured most of his mother’s baked goods.
According to significant findings in the study, 45% of gingerbread veterans lost a leg in “nom nom,” 10% incurred injuries from being dropped on the ground and 27% had their limbs crumble due to sustained third-degree burns in a 350˚F oven. As emergency rooms are really busy this time of year, doctors recommend that if an injury seems minor, and isn’t a life-or-death situation, the patient should try icing first.
The study also reported that birth defects are common and account for about 17% of gingerbread people’s missing limbs. “Sometimes we run low on ingredients,” said Meg Nutt, a baker. “So we make disabled gingerbread people with knobs for limbs, and they’re always a hit! I mean fewer limbs equals fewer calories so it’s great for the calorie-conscious.”
Researchers hope these new statistics will encourage all gingerbread people to create more accessible gingerbread houses, knowing they themselves may need accessible features down the line. The foundation recommends all gingerbread people have an emergency plan to prevent injuries in their lifetime. “You think it’s never going to happen to you, but watch out!” said Nutt. “Those kid chompers show up when you least expect them.”