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aidan
12-16-2005, 02:41 AM
A guy in work said something the other day I found quite weird, he was previously very overweight and was given advise by his doctor. One snippet given was not to chew gum! The doctor apparently said that chewing gum signals to the brain that food is on the way and that the body releases insulin in prep for this food, as no food is eaten, the body has produced insulin for no reason which then turns to fat!

Is this for real??? :confused:

elissalowe
12-16-2005, 03:18 AM
A guy in work said something the other day I found quite weird, he was previously very overweight and was given advise by his doctor. One snippet given was not to chew gum! The doctor apparently said that chewing gum signals to the brain that food is on the way and that the body releases insulin in prep for this food, as no food is eaten, the body has produced insulin for no reason which then turns to fat!

Is this for real??? :confused:
Wellllll, yes and no.

"Cephalic phase insulin release" is a conditioned response: a rise in insulin levels in anticipation of sweet, (presumably) energy-dense food. It's is a real phenomenon, but there's very little evidence that it occurs in response to artificial sweeteners - and no genuine proof that it makes any contribution to fat gain in humans. In one study, CPIR was higher in obese rats than in lean ones stimulated with saccharin. Insofar as I could find, there are no in-vivo studies comparing the ability of different artificial sweeteners to induce CPIR. There is one, odd, in-vitro (cell culture) study which demonstrated that "bitter" sweeteners (acesulfame-K, saccharin, cyclamate, steviosides) augmented the release of insulin from rat pancreatic islet cells incubated w/glucose, whereas aspartame had no effect.

There is some recent research that suggests artificial sweeteners might sabotage fat loss in a different way: by disrupting the ability of the body to "sense" the caloric value of foods. See: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=15111986 for the study abstract and http://thyroid.about.com/b/a/097511.htm?terms=artificial+sweeteners for a "user friendly" summary.

erp7e
12-18-2005, 06:50 AM
First of all let's evaluate this statement: "insulin which turns into fat." Either this guy's doctor is an idiot or the person you spoke with has limited understanding of physiology. You need substrate in order for insulin to store it as fat. Insulin increases uptake by cells of substrate from the bloodstream. If there is no substrate in the bloodstream, i.e. no food is consumed, I fail to see how/what is being stored as fat. Are we to suggest we are creating fat out of thin air? This would seem to violate the laws of physics. If this theory were true I could sit here chewing sugarfree gum for the rest of my life without eating anything and yet keep gaining weight. I'm SURE this is how everyone gets fat, right?

Additionally, I would venture to guess that most obese people have bigger problems to address than chewing gum, e.g. stop eating 3 dozen Krispy Kremes every day.