Chewing gum increases energy expenditure before and after controlled breakfasts

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Chewing has been associated with improved satiation and satiety, but little is known about the metabolic impact of gum chewing. We tested the hypothesis that gum chewing would increase energy expenditure (EE) and reduce respiratory exchange ratio (RER) before and after a controlled test meal. Seventeen males and 13 females (age 21.5 ± 6.6 years, body mass index 23.9 ± 2.8 kg/m2) participated in a randomized crossover study in which subjects chewed sugar-free gum for a total of 1 h (3 sessions of 20 min) on the test day (GC) and did not chew gum on a control day (NG). EE and RER were measured by indirect calorimetry after an overnight fast. Subjects consumed a breakfast shake containing 30% of their measured energy needs, and then postprandial EE and RER were measured for 3 h. Blood glucose (GLC) was measured in the fasting and postprandial states at regular intervals. Fasting EE was higher during GC (1.23 ± 0.04 kcal/min; 1 kcal = 4.2 kJ) than during NG (1.17 ± 0.04 kcal/min; p = 0.016). Postprandial EE was also higher during GC (1.46 ± 0.05 kcal/min) than during NG (1.42 ± 0.05 kcal/min; p = 0.037). Fasting and postprandial RER and GLC did not differ between GC and NG. The findings demonstrate that GC is associated with higher fasting and postprandial EE without altering blood glucose or substrate oxidation as measured by RER. These data suggest that gum chewing potentially could influence short-term energy balance in this population; however, longer-term research is needed.

Publication Title

Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism