Chew. Your. Food.

By: Coach Sammie

I was having a conversation with a friend the other day about how he hates to chew his food. He wished that he could drink a protein shake for every meal just so he could avoid the waste of time it took to chew. As I stood there shaking my head at the non-sense that was coming out of this mouth, I realized that while I knew why it’s so important to chew your food, but maybe some people out there don’t. Maybe they just see it as an inconvenience, maybe they don’t understand the significant role it plays in digestion, absorption, and metabolism. So I thought I’d share some reasons why you should CHEW YOUR FOOD:

  1. LET ME BREAK IT DOWN FOR YOU – Chewing breaks down large food particles into smaller ones, it even starts to liquefy food, making it easier for the stomach to continue with the digestion process. Digestion uses a lot of energy in the body and can be very demanding, especially when food is improperly chewed and therefore harder to digest. When food is chewed, the stomach becomes much more efficient in breaking food apart faster to continue into the intestines.
  2. SOAK UP THE GOODNESS – In order for your body to absorb nutrients and energy from the food you eat, it has to be broken down properly. Chewing makes the absorption process easier as the food particles pass through the intestines. Saliva is produced when chewing and saliva contains digestive enzymes which aide in breaking down food and increase absorption of nutrients.
  3. PROBLEM SOLVER – Chewing prevents improperly digested food from entering your blood and causing a wide range of adverse effects to your health, especially your gut. If large particles of food enter your stomach, it may remain undigested when it enters your intestines. There, your gut bacteria will have to break it down which can potentially lead to gas and bloating, constipation, abdominal pain, and other digestive problems.
  4. YOUR WAISTLINE WILL THANK YOU – Research shows that the longer you chew your food, the less you are likely to consume. Partially because it takes more time to eat, therefore limiting your intake, but it also can affect your neurological response to what you are eating, making you feel fuller while eating less. This can help to control weight gain and even lead do weight loss.
  5. SHOW ME THAT SMILE – The bones holding your teeth get a ‘workout’ when you chew, helping to keep them strong. The saliva produced while chewing is also beneficial, helping to clear food particles from your mouth and wash away bacteria so there may be less plaque buildup and tooth decay.
  6. MAN THAT TASTES GOOD – The faster you eat and less you chew, the less likely you are to taste the food you are consuming. By slowing down and taking your time to chew your food, you are able to savor every bite and really enjoy what you are eating. And who doesn’t want that?

Hope that made you all hungry, no go eat some food… and don’t forget to CHEW!

Coaches CornerLaura Dyszynski