The Phoenix

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Killer Gum

Oompa, Loompa, doom-pa-dee-do
I have another puzzle for you
Oompa, Loompa, doom-pa-da-dee
If you are wise, you'll listen to me

Gum chewing's fine when it's once in a while
It stops you from smoking and brightens your smile
But it's repulsive, revolting, and wrong
Chewing and chewing all day long

The way that a cow does

Oompa, Loompa, doom-pa-dee-da
Given good manners, you will go far
You will live in happiness too
Like the Oompa Loompa doom-pa-dee-do

Those little orange-faced dwarfs were smarter than I realized. It's been documented that chewing too much gum isn't good for you - especially your jaw muscles. But can the stuff inside gum actually affect your health?

Not likely. Unless you chew all day long "the way that a cow does."

Abigail Cormack, of New Zealand, was hospitalized for awful muscle cramps and tingling in her extremities five months ago. They were afraid this very fit and otherwise healthy woman was having a heart attack. Her heart was out of rhythm, and she was having anxiety attacks, depression, and terrible rashes. Doctors were baffled.

Her doctor read about how aspartame, a synthetic sweetner also known as NutraSweet, could become deadly if ingested in large amounts over a long period of time. The doctor also knew of Abigail's habit - she chewed at least four packs of aspartame-filled gum per day.

Aspartame is digested into aspartic acid, phenylalanine and methanol, which then becomes formaldehyde - a deadly neurotoxin used as embalming fluid (ewwwwww!). The doctor wasn't sure aspartame was the cause, so ordered Abigail to stop chewing gum for 24 hours. Her symptoms ceased immediately.

I'm happy to report that Abigail is doing great, and no longer chews gum with aspartame - for her health's sake. Her new vice is chain smoking and gummy bears.

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Anonymous kim said...

Yeah I've seen a couple of things about aspartame recently that are scary.

4 packs of gum a day though?? That's dedication.

6/21/2007 10:02 AM  
Blogger cube said...

Egads! Abigail needs a lesson in moderation.

6/21/2007 10:24 AM  
Blogger Karen said...

Agree, moderation is the *key*.

6/21/2007 11:00 AM  
Blogger Phats said...

Wow thanks for the tips, I used to chew a ton of gum im HS not so much anymore. I loved willy wonka!

6/21/2007 11:16 AM  
Blogger Jay said...

How is it even possible to go through that much gum?

6/21/2007 11:54 AM  
Blogger BrianAlt said...

Yummy! Gummy bears are gooooood!

I hope she's not eating the sugar free ones though.

6/21/2007 1:55 PM  
Blogger Nan said...

I hardly ever chew gum - My jaw always hurt afterwards and usually gum tastes "too much".

I have never heard about aspartame though - interesting!

6/21/2007 4:06 PM  
Blogger Crazy Dan said...

Cramps in her jaw... you sure she wasn't doing something else?

6/21/2007 6:41 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

I know it's probably politically incorrect, but those little dudes scare the living crap out of me.

6/21/2007 8:59 PM  
Blogger Keshi said...

I dun much like Gum...


6/21/2007 9:09 PM  

4 packs!!!

6/21/2007 11:33 PM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

This is why I try to avoid food--with anything in it. Everything will kill you in large enough doses.

Dan is sooooo right. I almost closed this window as soon as I saw those Oompa-Loompas. They still give me the willies.

Don't do that to us again, evil Phoenix.

-- david

6/22/2007 6:44 AM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

I thought about this yesterday...let's say one pack of gum is $1.50. Four per day = $6.00 a day. Per month, that's $180.00!!!!!

6/22/2007 8:24 AM  
Blogger The Egg said...

Yeah that's a serious habit! Now she's hooked to smokes?! Yikes. Anyway, thanks for the warning.

6/22/2007 11:05 AM  
Blogger DaBich said...

YIKES!! $180 of gum a month! That's just wrong!!

6/22/2007 12:36 PM  
Blogger goldennib said...

That's why I smoke.

6/22/2007 3:41 PM  
Blogger Jamie Dawn said...

Abby better be careful!
Those gummy bears will kill her!!!!

6/24/2007 3:07 PM  
Anonymous the weirdgirl said...

EW! I knew there was a reason I didn't like Nutrasweet.

6/24/2007 8:59 PM  
Blogger Sherri said...

Yikes! Makes me think twice about all the sugar free stuff I consume...

6/25/2007 3:37 PM  
Blogger mojotek said...

Wow... I chew about 3-4 pieces of gum per day. Am I pickling myself with formaldehyde?

6/25/2007 3:38 PM  
Blogger Sassy Blondie said...

My Southern belle of a grandmother never allowed us to chew gum. "Proper ladies" do not go around chewing like cows on cud. So, I never developed any kind of taste or want for gum-chewing.

And yes, Oompah Loompahs are kinda freaky...

6/25/2007 10:21 PM  
Blogger ozymandiaz said...

I ALWAYS listen to the oompa loompas. they have never steered me wrong. in fact, there are several living in my head right now.
they are saying something...
sorry this is taking so long but everything they say is on one of those damn song riddle things and takes for ever...

Oompa, Loompa, doom-pa-dee-do
I have quite puzzle for you
Oompa, Loompa, doom-pa-da-dee
If you are wise, you'll listen to me

The Phoenix is fine every once in a while
read him and get a great big 'ol smile
he's full of info that's good and true
and perhaps a small pile of poo

it goes on but I usually quit listening before the end...
something paranoia something something...

anyhow, ...
what was I talking about?

6/28/2007 9:31 AM  
Anonymous kimberly Wadycki said...

I've never watched the show "House" before but this guy came in with massive diarehha and House diagnosed it as linked to chewing gum.

6/30/2007 10:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

8/28/2007 4:17 AM  

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Welcome to the blog that aims to examine the lighter side of science. From the paranormal to wacky inventions, to strange mysteries and goofy experiments, I cover it all. Thanks for stoping by science is always stranger than fiction


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