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Chewing Gum While Exercising: 4 Reasons You Shouldn't Be Doing It

Oct 25, 2010

There are many people who enjoy chewing gum to take their mind off what they are doing. Chewing gum is relaxing and also a nice way to freshen your breath. However, if you are exercising, there are plenty of reasons why you should avoid it. You really shouldn't be chewing gum when exercising because there are many problems and dangers which it can cause.

1. Induces Choking

When chewing gum and exercising, there is a serious danger of choking. This is one of the main reasons why you should avoid doing it. This might not be as much of an issue with weight lifting. However, if you are jogging, then it would be quite easy to accidentally choke on the gum. This will be uncomfortable, if not potentially dangerous.

2. Bad for Your Teeth

Another reason why you should avoid chewing gum is because it's bad for your teeth. Most varieties of gum contain sugar, which can cause tooth decay and gum disease. If you are chewing gum every time you exercise, then you could cause a lot of damage. If you must chew gum, then stick to sugar free varieties and those containing xylitol.

Even sugar free chewing gum might not be very good for you. Many chewing gum varieties are sweetened with Aspartame, which is thought to cause cancer. These health risks are a reason why you should never chew gum and don't only apply to when you are doing exercise.

3. Makes It Difficult to Breathe

When you do vigorous exercise, you will normally need to breathe through your mouth. This provides more oxygen to your muscles which allows them to work longer. If you have gum in your mouth, then it will be difficult to open your mouth to breathe without the gum falling out.

Your breathing technique is the most important part of your exercise regime. Chewing gum really isn't that important.

4. Causes Dehydration

Many people will chew gum when jogging to prevent their mouths from drying out. This is because chewing gum will cause the body to produce more saliva. This is a waste of energy and water. Your body will use up more water to produce saliva because it thinks you are eating something. This could cause your body to become dehydrated, which is dangerous while exercising.

You should simply ensure that you are drinking plenty of fluids throughout your exercise.

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