April 16, 2009 08:56
It might help people suffering from gastro-esophageal reflux disease to chew sugar-free gum for about 30 minutes after a meal.
According to the U.S. Journal of Dental Research, doing so returned an acidic esophagus to normal levels and subjects did not suffer from a stomach ache for three hours.
The reflux disease is attributable to stress, smoking, and excessive intake of coffee or alcohol.
Song Ho-jin, a gastroenterologist at Seran General Hospital, said, "If you chew gum, the stomach acts to send down food and gastric acid, preventing the acid from flowing backward. Also, it stimulates the salivary glands, leading to more secretion of neutral saliva. As the saliva reaches the gullet, it neutralizes the acidity of the stomach, easing pain."
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