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Macdonald Campus, McGill University

Does Gum Really Stay in Your Stomach for Seven Years?

November 25, 2019

 

 

We’ve all heard the saying that if we swallow gum, it’ll stay in our stomach for seven years. But it that really the case? Well, no. Along with added flavours, colours, and sweeteners, gum is primarily made up of gum resin. While it’s true that this gum resin isn’t digestible by our bodies, the gum resin passes through our digestive system and comes out the other end, and in small amounts won’t do any harm. In rare cases large amounts of gum that are swallowed can cause blockages that may require surgery, though this mainly problematic for young children who swallow other non-food items that can stick to the gum. So unless you’re a toddler or you’re swallowing gum every day, there’s no reason to worry! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References:

 

Bauer, P. (n.d.). What Happens When You Swallow Gum? Retrieved November 15, 2019, from https://www.google.ca/amp/s/www.britannica.com/amp/story/what-happens-when-you-swallow-gum.


Experts, K. H. M. (Ed.). (n.d.). Does Swallowing Gum Cause Intestinal Problems? (for Teens). Retrieved November 15, 2019, from https://kidshealth.org/en/teens/swallow-gum.html.

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