Does gum help you diet or make you hungry? The Diet Gum Fad

Does gum help you diet or make you hungry? The Diet Gum Fad

When hunger pangs strike, does chewing a piece of gum stave them off or stoke them? Scientists are still chewing on the answer, but prevailing research gives some clues.

Dieters sometimes shun chewing gum because they fear it will exacerbate their feelings of deprivation and emptiness. They think, or feel, the chewing gum starts the gastric juices flowing by stimulating saliva in anticipation of some real food. When the juices find nothing to digest, it makes the person feel like devouring something.

Scientists have found evidence to the contrary, however. Stimulating saliva by chewing gum has not been shown to increase hunger. In fact, recent studies indicate that gum can decrease one’s appetite. A study presented at the 2007 annual scientific meeting of the Obesity Society found that chewing gum before an afternoon snack helped reduce hunger, diminish cravings, and promote fullness among people who were trying to limit their calorie intake.

The people who chewed gum before a snack consumed 25 fewer calories from that snack than the non-chewers. The study even touted the benefits of chewing gum for appetite control, saying that it is an easy, practical tool for weight management. If you think 25 calories is insignificant, here’s a little weight loss math:
25 * 7 equals 175 calories per week
25 * 7 * 52 equals 9,100 calories per year
That adds up to 2.6 pounds!

Other research studies have shown that hunger and the desire to eat are significantly suppressed by chewing gum at 1, 2, and 3 hour intervals AFTER a meal. If you are really trying hard, that might help you skip dessert!

If you’re still convinced that chewing gum makes you hungry, consider whether boredom, habit, or stress are responsible instead. Until science discovers otherwise, chewing gum is a tasty alternative to help you make it past that unnecessary extra helping, snack or dessert.

Lose weight with Chewing Gum

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