Chewing gum – can it be good for you?

Anti Bacterial, chewing gum, Xylitol

Well I used to think not! I thought all chewing gums were sweetened by Sorbitol, or E420, which can trigger weight loss by preventing absorption of nutrients. It doesn’t take a lot of Sorbitol to produce a laxative effect. It’s a well known fact in medical literature, going back 20 years.

Xylitol as a sweetener is not the same. Tt has lots of benefits. Study after study with children showed that xylitol prevented tooth decay.  But data also revealed that the children in studies using xylitol chewing gum were not only having less cavities, but also getting 42% fewer ear infections. (British Medical Journal Nov. 1996)

A doctor in the Hale Centre, Texas, became frustrated giving infants anti-biotics to cure ear infections. Dr Jones fully understood that the overuse of antibiotics damaged the microbiome (gut bacteria) of the children. This helped the bacteria to become resistant. Dr Jones knew that ear infections started in the nose. He began preparing a saline spray with xylitol. The results were astonishing. They had a 92% decrease in ear infections. He started using the spray on adults with sinus infections and had similar results.

Most people who have frequent chronic infections also have other respiratory issues, allergies, asthma etc. They too reported back that after using the spray the other issues were much more manageable.

What is happening here?

Dr Jones discovered that the usual methods for treatment of infections were drying out the nasal passage. He also knew that Xylitol is non-absorbable through the nasal tissue. It keeps your nose moist and working effectively for the 4 to 5 hours of the muco-ciliary clearance cycle. Bacterial can also cling to the muco-ciliary lining. For example, common pathogens such as Strep, Staph, H influenza and more.

How does Xylitol do this? 

Xylitol promotes nitric oxide production. This speeds up ciliary movement, helps to open airways and blood vessels. Finally, it reduces inflammation and improves nasal airflow by as much as 35% with regular use.

From now on I’m, chewing gum. My favourite – Peppersmith Fine English Peppermint Chewing gum, available in Holland & Barrett from £1.99 a packet.