Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Wonders of Gum

When I was in high school my teacher ask my female classmate a hypothetical question (because this female classmate of mine is notorious for chewing gum) so the question & answer goes like this…..

Teacher: (Name of my female classmate), para saan at ngumunguya tayo ng chewing gum?

My female classmate: Para po ma-exercise ang bibig. (deadpan)

And the whole class laugh…..

Then last Tuesday (November 18) I read an article by Dr. Tyrone Reyes thru his column in the Philippine Star

The Wonders of Gum

"It might lose its flavor after a while, but it can still have medicinal value. Research shows that after abdominal surgery, chewing gum for one hour, three times daily, significantly hastens the resumption of normal bowel function and reduces the time patients spend in the hospital. Eating and drinking are also effective but can cause nausea.

“Chewing gum doesn’t put as much in your system if you’re not ready for it, yet it might help stimulate intestinal activity,” says Jeffrey Drebin, MD, professor and chief of gastrointestinal surgery at the University of Pennsylvania. “I encourage my patients to chew gum as soon as they’re awake enough not to choke on it.”

The findings of a study of 158 patients from Imperial College London and published in the August 2008 issue of the Archives of Surgery showed that patients who chewed sugarless gum while recovering from colon surgery for five to 45 minutes had faster return of bowel function, measured in the time it took after surgery for them to pass gas for the first time (a half-day earlier than nonchewers) and to have a first bowel movement (a day earlier). There was no reported problem caused by the gum. The authors explained that sorbitol, a common artificial sweetener in gum, has a known laxative effect.

A 2002 Japanese study also showed that gum-chewing patients recovered faster after laparoscopic colon surgery. Likewise, in 2006, researchers at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital in California found that gum chewers who had undergone large-incision abdominal surgery moved their bowels 26 hours earlier than other patients. So with your surgeon’s approval, pack some gum, preferably sugarless, before heading for the hospital.

Studies also suggest that chewing gum can relieve heartburn, which results when acid from the stomach backs up into the esophagus, a disorder called gastro-esophageal reflux. In a 2005 British study, 31 people with this condition consumed a fatty, heartburn-inducing lunch for two days and were randomly selected to chew gum for 30 minutes afterward. Stomach acid levels were significantly lower when they chewed gum. An earlier study found that chewing gum for one hour after breakfast reduced symptoms for up to three hours.

Chewing gum stimulates the production of saliva, which neutralizes acid in the esophagus. “It has the same effect as an antacid,” explains C. Mel Wilcox, MD, professor of medicine at the University of Alabama. The treatment may especially appeal to pregnant women who want to avoid medications."


chubskulit said...

Interesting and informative, thanks for posting this one..

misty said...

tama yung classmate mo lol..

joops said...

Now I know what it does for us, thanks BUD!