Chewing food improperly can originate from habits or the nature of each person’s life. However, whatever the reason, not chewing food thoroughly brings certain harms and over time it is not only the digestive system that is affected.
Not chewing well makes you not feel the delicious taste of the food, and also more or less affects the amount of nutrients that you absorb into the body. This bad eating habit can bring risks that you did not expect.
7 harmful effects of not chewing food thoroughly
Effects of digestive problems when chewing food poorly
Not chewing food properly can lead to many digestive problems, especially for foods high in carbohydrates. Digestion begins when you put food in your mouth. When chewing well, the salivary glands secrete an alkaline enzyme called ptyalin. This enzyme breaks down food into simple sugars and helps in better digestion. So when you don’t chew thoroughly, food will be difficult to break down, which can lead to indigestion, heartburn, constipation and acid reflux.
The digestive system is the first organ affected when you do not chew well
It is difficult for the body to absorb nutrients
If the food has not been chewed thoroughly but brought to the digestive system, at this time the digestive organs will have a lot of difficulties in absorbing nutrients for the body. This means that your body is not getting the nutrients it needs even though you have eaten enough healthy foods. This is really a waste.
Increased risk of food poisoning
You may not believe it, but food poisoning is one of the risks that you can encounter when you do not chew thoroughly. Properly chewing our oral cavity will secrete an enzyme called lysozyme. This enzyme destroys food-borne pathogens. Chewing food several times will ensure that enough enzymes are released to destroy any remaining bacteria in the food.
Make the mood worse
Not chewing food well can also put you in a bad mood. When the digestion of food is not completed, it can lead to bloating in the stomach and this can make you uncomfortable. An upset stomach will certainly not make you happy.
Uncontrolled weight gain due to improper chewing of food
Chewing quickly will make you eat more than usual, and chewing poorly can also make it easier to absorb large amounts of uncontrollable calories. This is the reason why you easily gain weight.
The risk of weight gain is higher when you chew improperly
Increased bacteria in the gut
Improper shredding of food can make large pieces of food difficult to digest. This can lead to an increase in bacteria in the colon. This is what causes abdominal pain, cramps, constipation, and other stomach problems.
Injury to the pharynx and esophagus
Chewing too quickly and swallowing food in large pieces can damage the lining of the throat and esophagus. This can also lead to acid reflux, heartburn, bloating, stomach cramps, irritable bowel syndrome, and constipation. Remember that the digestion of food begins in the mouth and that the stomach cannot perform its function of breaking down food.
The explanation for “chewing well and full for a long time”
When you know the harmful effects of not chewing well, you are probably wondering how many times is enough or how to chew properly. The next content will be the answer for you.
How many times is enough?
According to experts, you should chew 32 times before swallowing. With soft and watery foods, the number of chewing times may be less. The purpose of thorough chewing is to break down food to make it easier to digest when it enters the stomach. 32 times seems to be an average that applies to most meals. For dry and chewy foods, such as steak and nuts, up to 40 chews may be required. With some soft and succulent dishes like watermelon, the number of chews can be less, only 10 to 15 times.
The benefits of slow chewing
As mentioned above, chewing is the first step in the digestive process. Chewing and salivation helps to break down and mix the food, then the food will be pushed into the esophagus when you swallow. The esophagus pushes food into the stomach. In the stomach, food will be mixed with enzymes and further broken down to convert to energy. When enough food is digested in the stomach, it moves into the small intestine, where it combines with more enzymes to further break down. The nutrients from food are absorbed in the small intestine, while waste is sent to the large intestine. The remaining waste is then excreted through the rectum and anus.
Chewing is not only an important part of the digestive process, but it is also beneficial for overall health. Experts say that the faster you eat, the more you tend to eat. Conversely, chewing food several times at a slow rate can reduce overall food intake. In one study, 30 healthy women consumed meals at varying rates. Women who ate slowly consumed significantly less food but still felt fuller than those who ate faster. Also, in another study, chewing more while eating was found to reduce snacking on candy later in the day.
Besides weight control, experts say that chewing food properly can also help increase the amount of nutrients from food. In one study, the results showed that chewing almonds 25 to 40 times not only suppresses hunger but also increases nutrient absorption from almonds.
Chewing food well will help you eat well and control your weight well
How to chew properly?
Here are some tips for you to chew properly as advised by nutritionists:
- Take the right amount of food on a spoon or fork. Food should be inside the spoon, fork and not left out.
- Put the food in your mouth, close your lips and start chewing, use your tongue to move the food from side to side and slightly rotate your jaw.
- Chew slowly, counting to 32 with each scoop of food. You may need more or less time depending on the type of food.
- Only swallow when you feel the food is really smooth.
If you have digestive problems, drinking water while eating is not a good remedy. Drinking water can slow down digestion by diluting the enzymes in the body that break down food. This issue should be especially noted if you have a digestive disorder such as gastroesophageal reflux disease.
Not chewing well when eating is probably a habit of many people, but you should quickly overcome this problem so as not to affect the digestive system. In addition, to improve health, you should set up an exercise regimen that is suitable for your body. Or you can use the easyhealthylive.com application to connect with professional coaches, they will support you in your training as well as advise on a reasonable diet for you. Currently, the basic easyhealthylive.com package is only 500,000 VND and you will receive 110 LEEP Coins to experience. Don’t hesitate to load LEEP Coins right away.
7 dangers of not chewing your food properly https://www.elcrema.com/7-dangers-of-not-chewing-your-food-properly/ Accessed 20/05/2021
Chewing Your Food: Is 32 Really the Magic Number? https://www.healthline.com/health/how-many-times-should-you-chew-your-food Accessed 20/05/2021
John Alen was born in 1971 and is a doctor in the healthcare and psychology fields with many years of experience. He is currently working at easyhealthylive.com, a leading health and psychology blog. Having studied at Y1 National Medical University named after IM Sechenov, John Alen is using his knowledge and experience to help improve the physical and mental health of people in the United States.