Chewing Gum: The Nasty Habit That’s Good for You




Etiquette experts will frown but the evidence is indisputable: you should chew gum.

It makes you smarter.
A study out of the Baylor College of Medicine shows a 3% increase in standardized math scores from students who chewed gum during homework and exams.

Eat more healthfully.
According to a report in the medical journal Appetite, gum chewers snack less and have fewer cravings for unhealthy foods.

Improve your digestion.
Chew just before or after you eat. It helps your body create more saliva and build up the acid in your stomach, which gives your digestive system a boost. Since stomach acid levels decline with age, beginning by about age 40, this can be especially beneficial for older adults.

Fight heartburn.
While gum increases stomach acids, it can actually lower acid levels in the mouth and esophagus. Chewing gum after a meal can help reduce acid reflux and heartburn symptoms and may aid in preventing gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

Stay sharp.
The journal Brain and Cognition suggests that chewing gum can increase blood flow to the brain and improve cognitive performance. Brain scans show gum-related activity in eight areas of the brain, and test subjects demonstrated improved alertness and motor skill reaction times that were up to 10 per cent faster than non-chewers.

Your dentists wants you to.
Sugarless gum can prevent cavities. It can neutralize plaque, whiten teeth, and even strengthen them by remineralizing tooth enamel. The American Dental Association suggests a 20 minute chew after meals to prevent tooth decay.

Unless you suffer from a jaw ailment or certain other health conditions, chewing gum can be good for you in so many ways. For the best results, stick with ADA-approved chewing gum.

Of course there’s a time and place for everything.
The Modern Manners Guy clarifies the new gum-chewing etiquette.

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Is it appropriate conversation for the dinner table? Then it should be fine.

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