Can Chewing Gum help with acid reflux?

Put simply….
Chewing gum may assist in easing the pain of heartburn, as chewing gum following a meal can neutralise the acid levels in the oesophagus.

But I want more detail….
Chewing Gum. Great after a garlic heavy meal. Annoying when it gets stuck on your shoe.
In recent years there has been a lot more being said about the benefits of chewing gum. Sure, chewing gum will freshen your breath; however the potential upsides go way beyond that.
But would you go as far as to call chewing gum a “natural remedy”? Well, let’s have a look at some facts.

According to a various research studies, chewing gum:

  • can help in improving memory
  • can reduce tension and other symptoms of stress
  • can assist with weight management
  • can improve digestion

This last point is particularly interesting, as there are studies that suggest that chewing gum may help to alleviate the painful symptoms of heartburn / acid reflux.

How does that work, you ask?
Chewing gum stimulates the flow of saliva in the mouth, whilst also lowering both the acid levels and sugar levels.
British researchers took this acid-lowering principle and tested whether chewing gum could have a positive impact on heartburn sufferers.

Participants in the study were provided high-fat meals (two bars of full-fat cheddar cheese, green salad with two tablespoons of mayonnaise, 15 large chips and half a pint of full-fat milk) that would induce heartburn on two different days. They were also instructed to select one day in which they would also chew gum for 30 minutes following their consumption of the meal (either day one or day two).

What researchers found was that the acid levels in the oesophagus (measured in the 2 hour period after the meal) was greatly lower when the participants had chewed gum versus the instances when they had not.
Chewing on the gum helped in pushing fluids back into the stomach, flooding the oesophagus with saliva, thus neutralising the acids that lead to heartburn symptoms.

Whilst obviously the benefits of chewing gum will differ from one person to the next, the scientific evidence does suggest that chewing gum may be a worthwhile alternative when looking at heartburn remedies.
Finally, don’t get too excited by the image. We are talking about sugar-free gum here guys!