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From: gem (c-68-53-89-164.hsd1.tn.comcast.net)
Subject:         Re: chewing and spitting out of food-- why we're gaining weight!
Date: June 10, 2006 at 5:22 pm PST

In Reply to: Re: chewing and spitting out of food posted by S on June 9, 2006 at 10:04 pm:

I found this on Finding Balance. com. It explains why we're gaining
weight from c&s.


Does Chewing and Spitting Cause Weight Gain?
Hi. All I want to know is if chewing and spitting causes weight gain
or not. I have heard both ends of the story and I need to know if
the calories absorbed are negligible or if it's like a good percent of
the food that you chew and spit. I don't chew and spit too often,
but I do it occasionally and it would help to know if I am gaining
many calories from this activity. Thanks, Marisa

Dear Marisa,

The simple answer is that the calories absorbed from chewing and
spitting are negligible. Since food is not exposed to digestive
enzymes of the gastrointestinal tract, fats, proteins and
carbohydrates cannot be digested (broken down into small pieces)
and therefore not absorbed. In fact, only an invert sugar like
honey, which is predigested by the bee into glucose, could be
absorbed through the tongue and contribute calories.

That said, the few calories that you would absorb by actually
swallowing the bite are not the real problem. The greater concern
and more important question is if chewing and spitting causes
weight gain. This has a potentially more damaging explanation.

There are two phases of eating that precede absorption. They are
referred to the ‘cephalic’ and ‘tasting’ phases of eating. Cephalic is
the suggestion of food, such as seeing, smelling and hearing about
food. The tasting phase is the post-ingestive and pre-absorptive
phase which would be chewing and spitting. Both the cephalic and
tasting phase trigger the release of insulin, which is not a good
thing if you have ever been overweight and especially if you have
lost weight. Excess insulin is a dieter’s worst nightmare because it
raises appetite, makes it easy to gain weight and makes it difficult
to lose weight. Also the resulting hyper-insulinemia is a precursor
of insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, and eventually diabetes.

You write, “I don’t chew and spit too often, but I do it occasionally.”
If you get too close to the fire you will get burned. “I smoked
marijuana but did not inhale,” said former President Bill Clinton.
Can you be a little bit pregnant? These statements are reminders
that you can’t fool Mother Nature and if you get too close to the
edge of the cliff you will fall. We have learned from the gastric
bypass surgical patients that ‘chewing and spitting’ is
inappropriate and has the strong possibility of progressing to an
eating disorder.

Chewing and spitting may seem like a reasonable compromise for
getting the benefits of tasting without the negligible contribution
of calories, but it is an inappropriate behavior that may very well
have negative and health threatening consequences.

- Dr. Carson

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