a month ago, I set out with the goal of not chewing a single piece of gum (or any artificially flavored mint) for an entire month.
crazy. this was one of my biggest habits/addictions! but i’m proud to say i did it! i stuck to my commitment, never caved, nor justified a situation worth needing a piece.
although, I will say, this final recap is probably going to sound a little different than my week 1 recap. I’m not going to lie, I definitely missed it. After the first week or so, I got over the impulsive desire to just grab a piece after every meal or during every idle or anxious moment. yet when I would see it laying around somewhere–in a drawer, a friend’s car, a coworker’s bag, I would practically lurch forward ready to chomp away. anddd then I’d remember. damn it. step. away. from. the. gum.
the hardest times, by far, were during road trips. gum used to always give me something to do and help keep me awake. the two long car rides I had were pretty difficult without it. I ended up eating a lot more of the time–which is something I found myself doing a little bit more of overall. It’s harder to say no to another bite or snacks laying around when you don’t have something in your mouth already. but I also drank a lot more water, which was a perk. by week 3, I found some all-natural organic mints at Trader Joe’s which I’d eat at work if I couldn’t brush my teeth. those helped a little bit and were nice to have around.
by week 4, I don’t think I could have chewed gum anyway, as my incoming wisdom teeth became relentless and impacted. post-surgery, I don’t think gum chewing lends well to recovery either.
once my whole teeth situation is remedied though, I can’t say I won’t ever chew a piece of gum again. but I will definitely be drastically reducing the amount I chewed. it was a nice change of pace–literally, as not always smacking away made me feel less restless. I still had some stomach discomfort & bloating over the month, so it’s hard to really attribute not chewing gum to having an impact there. I also still had a few kanker sores so I don’t think I can blame those on gum either. yet some of the headaches and head fogginess I get from artificial sugars definitely went away, which was extremely telling. my sweet tooth also seemed to get its’ fill quicker. maybe something about the long-lasting sweet flavor of gum previously had me wanting the same thing out of desserts?
all in all, it was a good challenge for me, and you’ll have to decide on a gum-chewing-verdict for yourself! on to month 2 of my 2014 “no habit is an accident” personal discovery. stay tuned to find out what it will be!