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Benefits and Drawbacks of Chewing Gum

Aug 24, 2021

Is chewing gum good or bad? Wondering if chewing gum consistently is safe? We have all the information you need right here. There is no question that chewing gum is one of the most popular forms of candy out there. Many people chew gum daily for various different reasons therefore it’s important to understand the benefits and drawbacks of chewing gum as a habit. 

What is chewing gum?

Chewing gum is a very popular product that is essentially a form of candy but is designated for enjoyment and not consumption. Various brands offer chewing gums ranging in different flavors, sizes, and even textures. Consumers most commonly use gum to change the taste and smell of one’s breath quickly.

Composition of Chewing Gums:

Every brand consists of unique ingredients and packaging styles, but all modern chewing gums contain a rubbery base that gives it that chewy consistency. Other common elements include:

Fillers: allows the gum to maintain its hard initial texture

Resin: strengthens the gums composition to allow it to stay together while chewing

Softeners: softens the texture of the gum to allow it to retain moisture while chewing

Preservatives: extends the shelf life of the product

Flavourings: arguably the seller point, of course, flavour to make the product desirable 

Sweeteners: added to sweeten the taste to make it palatable 

Benefits of Chewing Gum

1. Chewing gum can boost memory and lead to reduced stress levels: studies have shown that when performing tasks that require decision making and memory use, chewing gum can promote alertness and stimuli brain function!

2. Chewing gum can reduce tooth decay and cavities: various studies have proven that sugar-free chewing gums can help prevent tooth decay while also reducing bacteria within the mouth by a substantial amount. The gum acts as a sponge that absorbs harmful bacteria or plaque from the surface of your teeth, essentially cleaning it while chewing. 

3. Chewing gum can promote weight loss: studies have shown that chewing gum at specific times after/before food consumption can help reduce appetite. In addition, chewing gum can help deliver sugar cravings without the extra calories from consuming sweet foods. 

Drawbacks of Chewing Gum

1. Chewing too much gum can cause jaw problems

2. Chewing gum too often can lead to mild migraines and headaches for certain people

3. Chewing too much sugar-sweetened gum is bad for your tooth longevity and health as it can lead to cavities.

What type of chewing gum is good for my teeth?

Granted that sugar-free gums are the only types of chewing gums that can help your teeth, choose a gum that contains xylitol. Xylitol helps reduce tooth decay by lowering the cavity-building bacteria that induce plaque on the surface of your teeth.

Best Xylitol Gum Brands:

  • Pür
  • Peppersmith
  • XyloBurst
  • Xylitol 
  • Orbit
  • Trident

Bonus Myth Busted Common Question:

  • Does chewing gum take 7 years to digest if swallowed?

    >The answer is no! Although gum is not meant for consumption, swallowing small amounts is harmless. It is not recommended, but your digestive system is strong enough to break down the gum composition, leading to no harm. However, be warned that repeatedly swallowing enormous amounts of chewing gum can lead to other issues. 

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