Are you looking for healthy organic chewing gums? Fun Fact: The first organic gums date back 9,000 years ago when Northern Europeans chewed birch bark tar to treat toothaches. Today chewing gum is often considered to be unhealthy but that’s mostly due to the added sugar and artificial additives that are often included. However, there are several all-natural organic gums on the market. It’s all about sorting through the offerings in the roughly $22 billion (2018) industry. Many products are advertised as “all-natural” and other unclear terms so it’s important to get to the nitty-gritty of the ingredients they contain.
The best option when picking “natural” food is to go with certified organic products. There are various options available including chewing gum. This means there are no artificial ingredients in the product itself. There are no synthetic chemicals used to produce the ingredients including fertilizers, pesticides, and insecticides. You should also try to avoid other “natural” ingredients and especially white sugar. This is a highly-processed ingredient that’s much less healthy than sugarcane juice. There are also various additives that are frequently added that can make chewing gum less healthy. They include colors, sweeteners, etc. Such ingredients can also make chewing gum less healthy to chomp on.
Organic Gums: How It is Made?
It’s a lot tougher to find a natural bubble gum versus chewing gum based on the additives that are included for bubble-making. However, it’s easier to find organic chewing gum that’s made from 100% natural ingredients.
Chewing gum has been around for thousands of years before it was produced as a commercial product. In ancient times it was made from a tree resin that people chewed to relax. The American Mayans and ancient Greeks both chewed on different kinds of tree sap. Experts believe the history of chewing gum dates back to the New Stone Age period from about 9000 BC to 3000 BC.
The history of modern chewing gum dates back to when a Mexican politician named Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna was exiled to the USA. It’s believed he brought a resin with him named chicle. This was from the resin of the Sapodilla tree.
Businessman Thomas Adams found out that cooking chicle with sugar and flavoring made a better gum versus the popular wax-based ones. Later on, he founded a gum-making company known as Adams Sons & Co.
The resin-based gum became more popular during World War II. That’s when soldiers shared the product with people in other world regions.
One of the ways chewing gum has become unhealthier over the years is because the original chicklet was replaced with other ingredients that are easier to use. The four main ingredients used today in chewing gums include:
- Gum Base
Gum bases can be made with natural and artificial substances. In most situations countries have laws about which substances can be used as gum bases.
Next, there are three main kinds of sweeteners added to chewing gums. They include sugars, sugar alcohols, and 0-calorie artificial sweeteners. The main difference between “intense sweeteners” is they have a stronger flavor.
Best Organic Gums
1. Peppermint Chewing Gum by The Peelu Co.
One piece of chewing gum has 0 calories, 0g carbs, and 0g sugar. This one includes stevia plants, natural peppermint, and sugar alcohols. This adds flavor and sweetness minus the white granules.
2. Xylichew Chewing Gum
Each piece has 1g of carbs and 0g of sugar. The first ingredient is a plant-based sugar that’s actually good for oral health. Since the mouth can’t digest the sugar alcohol xylitol it doesn’t cause cavity-causing bacteria.
3. Glee Chewing Gum (Peppermint)
In 2 pieces you get 5 calories, 2g carbs, and 2g sugar. The gum base is citrus peels and it’s sweetened with sugar alcohols. This helps to keep the chewing gum natural and free of artificial additives.
4. Chicza Chewing Gum (Mint)
One piece of gum provides 8 calories, 1.5g carbs, and 1.5g sugar. This organic gum was developed in Mexico. The sweeteners include agave syrup and cane juice. While it has some sugar they’re natural sources.
5. Spearmint Chewing Gum by PUR
This chewing gum is non-GMO and sugar-free. IT also contains real spearmint and is vegan. This product is also available in several natural flavors.
6. Chewing Gum by Simply Gum
1 piece of gum has 3 calories, 1g carbs, and 1g sugar. This gum is sweetened with cane sugar and has natural flavors.
7. Xylitol Gum by Epic Dental
This product is sweetened with sugar alcohols. It has natural peppermint flavors and includes a 12 pack. This product is all-natural. It has no artificial sweeteners, which can cause various health problems.
8. Coolmint Chewing Gum
In 2 pieces you get 10 calories, 2g carbs, and 2g sugar. These figures make it quite healthy. Even the 2g sugar is quite low. The product includes Vitamin E that might help to lower the risk of cancer.
Chewing Gum Ingredients to Avoid
The “K” stands for potassium but that doesn’t make it any healthier. This is an artificial sweetener. It’s a potassium salt that also contains an unhealthy ingredient that’s been proven to be cancer-causing. Various side-effects include liver/kidney problems, nausea, headaches, and vision issues.
This ingredient sounds sort of healthy because it includes “calcium in the name. The substance is added to sugar-free gum to make it white and textured. Some studies show that CCP might cause various health issues that include some baby formulas. It’s best to be on the safe side and avoid the stuff until more long-term studies are done.
Titanium is really tough stuff but as you might guess it’s not the healthiest stuff to digest. Titanium Dioxide is linked to immune system problems. These autoimmune diseases cause the body to attack healthy cells. Some possible health conditions it could cause include asthma and cancer.
This stuff is often used to color chewing gums/candy. The highest amounts are found in chewing gums so make sure to read those ingredient labels.
The fancy name is Butylated Hydroxytoluene but it’s still as unhealthy. In fact, BHT has been banned in several countries due to its being toxic. The bad news is it’s still legal in some nations like the US. It’s often added as an additive to chewing gum and other highly-processed foods.
BHT is connected to a wide range of health problems. They include liver/kidney conditions and might be cancer-causing.
This is an artificial sweetener that’s health-unfriendly. In fact, it’s added to about one-third of all store-bought chewing gum. When the body processes aspartame it turns into some nasty stuff including a cancer-causing substance. Studies show that aspartame is linked to about 100 conditions/symptoms including weight gain, cancer, and Alzheimer’s compared to healthy organic gums.