NewsWise reports that research presented during the 2007 Annual Scientific Meeting of The Obesity Society, supports the role of chewing gum as an easy, practical tool for weight management.

First, the details.

  • 60 adults were asked to eat a sweet and salty afternoon snack after chewing a sweetened gum or not chewing gum.
  • Hunger, appetite, and cravings were rated immediately after lunch, and then hourly.

And, the results.

  • Chewing gum significantly reduced caloric intake by 25 calories and reduced sweet snack intake by 39 calories, with salty snacks decreased by 11 calories.
  • Hunger and desire to eat were significantly suppressed by chewing gum over 3 hours after lunch.
  • Participants said chewing gum improved their mood by reducing anxiety and stress, and increasing contentment and relaxation.

In a similar study among people not actively trying to manage their weight, chewing gum reduced snack intake by average of 36 calories. Data combined from both studies found that chewing gum reduced intake of the sweet snack in particular by an average of 47 calories.

The bottom line?
This study showed a reduction in calories, but not weight loss. Maybe that’s next.

There are lots of little things you can do to reduce your calorie intake. For example, eating slowly reportedly resulted in an 11% reduction in calories.

Also, using artificial sweeteners reduces your caloric intake by the amount of calories in the alternative sugar-containing drink or food.

One more thing. A Wrigley Science Institute Award supported this study. I mention it only to make the point that sponsorship is not a shorthand way to discredit a study, in my opinion.

The value of this (or any) study should be judged on the basis of its own design, implementation, and analysis. A single study always requires verification by another conducted by independent investigators.

You can’t complain that companies don’t do enough studies, and then criticize a study because it was company-sponsored.

10/22/07 21:06 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.