Chewing gum while walking could increase energy expenditure

A recent study led by Masashi Miyashita, associate professor of the Faculty of Sport Sciences, and Lotte Co., Ltd confirmed that chewing gum while walking could measurably affect physical and physiological functions, and possibly increase energy expenditure.

The study enrolled nearly 50 male and female participants of age 21 to 69, and their heart rates, walking distances, walking speeds, steps, and energy expenditures were measured as they walked at natural pace for 15 minutes. In the experimental trial, the participants chewed gum while walking, and in the control trial, they ingested powder which the ingredient is the same as the chewing gum without the gum base. As a result, the researchers found that the heart rate increased among participants in the experimental trial, and this effect was more apparent among middle-aged and elderly male participants, in whom the walking distance, heart rate, and energy expenditure (estimated from walking speed) increased.

This study was supported by a research grant from Lotte Co., Ltd, and was published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science on April 20.