It is simply unavoidable. At some point in life, stress is bound to occur. Whether it stems from issues in finances, health, relationships, or work, stress can and will be a part of daily life. That does not mean it has to take over your life, though. Several stress management techniques can help alleviate feelings of stress and anxiety, including breathing exercises, stretching, writing in a journal, unplugging from technology, and body massages. However, there is another quick and easy hack to help with stress and improve your mood: chew gum.
Yes, you read that correctly. Chewing gum helps reduce stress and relieves anxiety. In a 2008 study by Dr. Andrew Scholey of the Behavioral and Brain Sciences of Swinburne University, a physiological stress marker, salivary cortisol, was found to be 12 percent lower in gum chewers than non-gum chewers under moderate stress. Also, when compared to non-gum chewers, those who chewed gum showed a reduction in anxiety by almost 17 percent while under mild stress and almost 10 percent under moderate stress.
Chewing gum is not just for stress. It can positively affect your mental health, including moods and concentration when chewed regularly. In a more recent 2011 study, it was found that young, healthy individuals chewing gum can reduce fatigue, which is related to stress.
You cannot allow stress to overwhelm you; unchecked long-term stress can lead to heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, and it can dramatically alter your mood and behavior. Recognizing stress early on will help you on your way to a better, healthier life.