Try chewing gum for weight loss

June 15, 2021 4 min read

Chew gum to lose weight

Image by Vidmir Raic from Pixabay

Chewing gum to lose weight may be a viable method for some people to lose some weight, scientific studies have shown. It works in part by controlling appetite.

A study published in the scientific journal Appetite concluded [1]:

"Overall, chewing gum for at least 45 min significantly suppressed rated hunger, appetite and cravings for snacks and promoted fullness (p<0.05). This study demonstrated some benefit of chewing gum which could be of utility to those seeking an aid to appetite control."

A second study, published in Physiological Behavior,says [2]:

... GUM reduced pretzel intake in obese women (p=0.05) and Oreo cookie intake in healthy weight women (p=0.03) 3h after lunch. Chewing gum intermittently post-lunch enhances perceptions of satiety and may have important implications in reducing afternoon high carbohydrate-snack intake.

So gum can help you feel satisfied and not eat fattening foods in the afternoon.

Another study, also in Physiological Behavior,examined several other studies to determine whether chewing gum results in the release of hormones in the gut that make a person feel fuller [3]. That study did not draw firm conclusions, but rather stated:

Evidence currently suggests that chewing may decrease self-reported hunger and food intake, possibly through alterations in gut hormone responses related to satiety. Although preliminary, the results identify a need for additional research in the area. Focused, uniform, experimental designs are required to clearly understand the relationships that exist between mastication [chewing], appetite, satiety, food intake and, ultimately, body weight.

Not all studies showed the same findings, so chewing gum may work as a weight-loss method for some people but not others. Also, it might reduce people's desire to eat fruit, thereby reducing the quality of their diet.

Chew gum to cut calorie intake

Some people chew gum because it helps them cut calories. Instead of eating stuff that may end up as fat on the body, they chew gum, which has few or no calories.

Another study in Appetitefound that those in the study group who chewed gum in the morning ate 41 grams less of pasta at lunch [4]. That doesn't sound like much, but it is 68 calories. Add that up over the long term, and it may make a difference in your weight.

Does chewing gum burn calories?

Yes. A small study of 30 participants had some of them chew gum before and after breakfast [5]. Those who chewed gum burned between 3 and 5 percent more calories in the three hours after their meal than those who didn't chew.

Another study, in the journal Obesity, found that chewing gum after eating a meal increased diet-induced thermogenesis. DIT is the process where digestion burns calories. But the number of calories burned was small, and the study found eating slowly was more effective at DIT than chewing gum. [6]

Also, walking while chewing gum may help with weight loss by significantly increasing the speed at which people walk and their heart rate. This may result in increased burning of fat and calories.

Studies [7, 8] found that 0.4 to 6 calories extra burn during 15 minutes of walking and chewing gum, so the effect is small. Healthline, in an article summarizing all this research says "it’s unlikely this will produce significant weight loss results without being coupled with other dietary and lifestyle changes." [12].

For what it's worth, Healthline also reports: "Moreover, some people claim that chewing gum may help shape your face by toning your muscles. However, no research supports this claim."

Try sugar-free gum with caffeine

Viter Energy has just come out with mint and cinnamon sugar-free gum with caffeine. Because it is sugar-free, you don't have those added calories. And the caffeine has been shown to help the body burn more fat and calories.

Healthline cites a study of more than 600 participants whose greater caffeine intake was linked to lower weight, less body fat, and a lower body mass index [9]. Two other studies found that people burn more fat while resting and exercising when on caffeine [10, 11]

 Healthline cautions people who chew caffeinated gum to watch their other caffeine intake. In other words, don't chew 4 sticks of gum and have 4 cups of coffee, or you may exceed the daily recommended limit of 400 mg of caffeine.

Viter Energy Gum [13] is powerfully flavored sugar-free chewing gum that contains caffeine, guarana and B Vitamins. For several years, Viter Energy has been producing caffeinated mints [14] but recently expanded to sell caffeinated gum.

A Viter Energy blog [15] explains about guarana that it is a vine that first grew wild in South America. Guaraná (Paullinia cupana), also known as Brazilian cocoa, grows as a shrub or woody vine in Brazil.  Because Guaraná seeds have the highest caffeine content (2.5%-5%), it’s been used in Brazilian soft drinks since 1909.

The gum comes in wintergreen and cinnamon flavors. It delivers caffeine over a sustained period of time, but the caffeine kicks in quicker than even a cup of coffee or an energy drink.

Conclusion

If you need to lose weight, experiment to see if chewing gum helps you control your appetite and feel fuller so you're not tempted to over-eat at meal or snack times. While the weight-loss effects of chewing gum may be small, they can add up over time.

Sources:

[1] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21718732/

[2] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26948161/

[3] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26188140/

[4] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28733151/

[5] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25794237/

[6] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26887536/

[7] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6511506/

[8] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5909016/

[9] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30335479/

[10] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27331913/

[11] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26189608

[12] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/chewing-gum-for-weight-loss

[13] https://www.goviter.com/collections/viter-energy-mints/products/viter-energy-caffeine-gum-2-flavor-variety-pack

[14] https://amzn.to/3jb7Gwg

[15] https://www.goviter.com/blogs/viter-energy-blog/plants-around-world-contain-caffeine

Mark Miller
Mark Miller



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