Chewing gum is not just a piece of sweet candy to freshen your breath, you know. Yes, it actually has some known benefits to other parts of your body. Some of these include improved memory, reduced stress, and increased focus. Some other less common benefits are reduced stomach acid levels, better weight management, and improvement of oral health too. Here we tell you more about these health benefits of chewing gum.
A lot of already published studies have shown that chewing gum can boost mental performance. Specifically, concentration, memory, and reaction times were all seen to have improved when subjects chewed on gum. This is probably because of the increased blood flow to the brain while chewing. In turn, oxygen levels increase in the brain, which then helps to enhance memory and other cognitive functions.
In addition to memory, many studies have also shown that chewing gum can increase alertness too. This is because the chewing movement of the jaw is capable of stimulating the brain associated with arousal. As a result, people feel more awake or stay awake longer. Mint-flavored gum is thought to be able to do this the best.
Chewing gum has also been approved by the American Dental Association as a healthy habit. They recommend chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after meals as it reduces plaque, promote tooth enamel, reduce cavities, and reduce gingivitis. This is because chewing increases saliva flow, which reduces acid on your teeth that causes decay. Just make sure your gum is sugarless, as sugar-containing gums can actually add to acid build-up.
For those who have hyperacidity, heartburn, and reflux, chewing gum after meals may actually help reduce acid. Increased saliva production is again the reason behind this. Saliva is a neutral substance that will somehow buffer the acid in your stomach. However, we recommend that you avoid peppermint and spearmint flavors because these can increase acid levels and make heartburn worse.
Regularly chewing on some low-calorie gums can have a beneficial effect on eating habits too. Studies show that chewing gum can help ward off some food cravings and make you consume less. Makes sense, right? You’re hungry, you chew on something, and then you realize that you’re not hungry to begin with.