October 25, 2014
Gum and Weight Control
Wellness Tip

Gum and Weight Control

by Berkeley Wellness  |  

Don’t believe claims that chewing gum helps in weight control. Some studies— notably those from Wrigley—have suggested that gum helps suppress appetite and curb calorie intake. But the research has been inconsistent, and an independent study from the University of Buffalo, published in the journal Eating Behaviors, in April did not find any weight-loss benefits.

People who chewed gum before meals for two weeks consumed the same number of total daily calories as those who didn’t chew gum. Even those chewing a “diet” gum (containing green tea extract, guarana and other “weight-loss” ingredients) didn’t eat less or lose weight. The gum chewers also ate a less healthful diet, possibly because mint gum, in particular, may make healthy foods (like fruit) taste bad while having no effect on junk foods (candy and chips).

One thing is certain: Chewing gum does burn a few calories—about 11 an hour. But you’d have to chew (sugarless) gum for 12 hours every day for a month to lose just one pound.