Chewing gum is widely chewed by many people, especially adolescents. It can be good for us. Apart from ensuring fresh breath, it also subsides cigarette cravings, improves memory and strangely helps in weight loss.
Contestants on The Biggest Loser use it regularly, and studies have shown that chewing gum can help control cravings, manage hunger, and promote weight loss.
Still, don’t get the idea that chewing a few sticks of gum a day is going to melt off the pounds. A few small studies have shown that chewing gum can help you shave calories.
Sugar-free gum is best because it is usually less than 5 calories per piece, compared to 10 calories for regular gum. They are more like “free food”, free of high sugar content.
Weight Loss Benefits of Chewing Gum
Research from the University of Rhode Island showed that people who chewed gum consumed 68 fewer calories at lunch and did not compensate by eating more later in the day.
Chewing gum also helped the study participants satisfy their cravings and resist fattening treats. A study shows that gum chewers actually burned about 5% more calories than non-gum chewers.
Another study, from Louisiana State University, indicated that chewing gum was helpful in controlling appetite Gums decrease participants’ daily intake by 40 calories and reduce snack cravings.
If you cut 50 calories a day or so by chewing gum, then make another small lifestyle change — like switching from 2% to 1% milk or taking the stairs at work — you can easily cut 100 calories a day. And that could add up to losing 10 pounds in a year.
The best results come out of chewing gums when we prefer them instead of sugar-filled candy, doughnut or some other equivalent. Substitute gum for a snack-size bag of chips once a week, and you could lose two pounds in a year.
Here are some tips for saving calories by chewing gum:
- Chew gum when you have the urge to eat a snack between meals.
- Take gum at the end of the meal this can prevent extra munching while watching TV or at a party.
- Keep some in your purse or briefcase to help you resist high-calorie temptations.
- Keep your mouth busy with a piece of gum while you cook to prevent nibbling.
Make less use of chewing gum though…
Although chewing gum can help you cut calories and avoid fattening snacks, it’s important not to go overboard. Most sugar-free chewing gums contain a low-calorie sweetener called sorbitol. Sorbitol is a sugar alcohol that is poorly absorbed by the small intestine and acts like a laxative.
A study in The British Medical Journal tells of cases of chronic diarrhea, pain, and unexplained weight loss that was traced to excessive consumption of sorbitol-containing gum (15-20 sticks daily).
Bloating can also be caused by chewing gum because it increases the consumption of air during chewing. We can use alternate gum with a solid piece of hard candy.
Chewing gum is another tool of weight loss that can help you manage hunger and cravings, and add up to calorie savings over time. Results will not be dramatic – but then again, it’s not difficult to munch on some gum to control your yearning for sweets.
Since you take chewing gum it doesn’t mean that we should avoid nutritious snacks like vegetables, low-fat dairy, whole grain crackers, and fruit. And don’t forget to keep your sugar alcohol in check by limiting consumption of foods and beverages containing sorbitol.
Nearly 15% of all chewing gum varieties sold a promise to provide health-enhancing supplements to users, so Penn State researchers studied whether two vitamin-supplemented products were effective at delivering vitamins to the body. Their results validate the concept of gum as an effective delivery system for at least some vitamins.
This is the first time ever where researchers have proved that chewing gums can deliver vitamins to our body. The findings, he suggests, indicate that chewing gum could be a strategy to help reduce vitamin deficiency around the world, a problem described as an epidemic.
In the United States vitamin deficiency is a serious problem, with nearly one in 10 people are deficient in vitamins B6 and C, according to a recent analysis of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. This can be curbed by adding chewing gum to out weight loss plans.